England chase down 350 for big ODI win

England captain Eoin Morgan struck a blistering century in a record chase as his side beat New Zealand by seven wickets in the fourth one-day international at Trent Bridge on Wednesday to level the five-match series at 2-2.

Morgan made 113 and Joe Root 106 not out as England finished on 3-350 with six overs to spare.

It was the equal-fourth highest total by any team batting second to win an ODI.

Root and Morgan’s stand of 198 was the highest third wicket ODI partnership against New Zealand.

England had earlier held New Zealand to 7-349.

Kane Williamson top-scored with 90 following his 118 in World Cup finalists New Zealand’s three-wicket win at Southampton on Sunday.

The most England had previously made batting second to win an ODI was 306 for five against Pakistan at Karachi in 2000.

But they stayed true to their intention to play an attacking brand of cricket following a humiliating first-round exit at this year’s World Cup – which included an eight-wicket defeat by New Zealand.

They scored 97 runs in the first 10 overs of their reply after the innings started with a maiden from left-arm paceman Ben Wheeler.

But Wheeler’s next three overs cost 41 runs.

Following a brief rain break, Alex Hales carried on from where he had left on his Nottinghamshire home ground, with Mitchell McClenagan’s first over going for 22.

Hales finished the over with two huge sixes over deep square leg to the delight of a near capacity crowd of 16,726.

But fast bowler Matt Henry removed Hales (67) and fellow opener Jason Roy (38) in a spell of 2-7 in eight balls.

Root came in at 2-111.

The Yorkshireman was missed on nine as not for the first time this series, Ross Taylor dropped a slips catch.

Meanwhile former Ireland international Morgan drove McClenaghan and Henry for well-struck sixes.

He took only 39 balls for his fifty against an attack missing the steadying influence of injured left-arm paceman Trent Boult.

Left-hander Morgan had a lucky break on 66 when he hit Henry way up in the air towards deep midwicket, where neither Grant Elliott nor Wheeler – who almost collided with one another – got a hand to the ball.

Morgan went to his century in style, with a fifth six over long-on off Henry. His 73-ball ton also included 11 fours.

He eventually holed out off Southee.

Root followed his skipper to three figures, in 94 balls with 12 fours, as he posted his second hundred of the series following his 104 in England’s 210-run win in the first ODI at Edgbaston.

He rounded off an emphatic victory by pulling Mitchell Santner’s left-arm spin for four.

Earlier, either side of Williamson’s innings, New Zealand opener Martin Guptill made 53 and all-rounder Elliott an unbeaten 55 off 52 balls.

The Black Caps, after winning the toss, had threatened a huge score at 2-187 off 30 overs.

But England fought back well with the ball, thanks mainly to fast bowlers Mark Wood (1-49 in 10 overs) and Steven Finn (1-51 in 10).

Williamson and Taylor, who made 110 at the Rose Bowl, had shared a stand of 206 on Sunday.

They managed 101 between them on Wednesday with Taylor, lbw to Finn for 42.

Williamson fell when he drove left-armer David Willey to a leaping Adil Rashid at mid-on.

He faced just 70 balls, including 12 fours and a six.

The series concludes at north-east county Durham’s Chester-le-Street ground on Saturday.

HIGHEST TOTALS BY A TEAM BATTING SECOND TO WIN A ONE-DAY INTERNATIONAL:

438-9 RSA v AUS, Johannesburg, Mar 12, 2006

362-1 IND v AUS, Jaipur, Oct 16, 2013

351-4 IND v AUS, Nagpur, Oct 30, 2013

350-3 ENG v NZL, Nottingham, Jun 17, 2015

350-9 NZL v AUS, Hamilton, Feb 20, 2007

340-5 NZL v AUS, Auckland, Feb 18, 2007

334-8 AUS v ENG, Sydney, Feb 02, 2011

332-8 NZL v AUS, Christchurch, Dec 10, 2005

330-4 IND v PAK, Dhaka, Mar 18, 2012

330-7 AUS v RSA, Port Elizabeth, Apr 06, 2002

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