New Zealand vs England 2019: 3 important take-aways from the 2nd T20I
England and New Zealand faced each other at the Westpac Stadium in Wellington for the second T20I of the five-match series. England won the toss and decided to bowl first, just like their previous match.
The visitors probably expected a joy-ride similar to that of their previous encounter against the Kiwis. In that match, England allowed New Zealand to score just 153-5 in their quota of 20 overs, and the run-chase was a cakewalk as they completed it in 18.4 overs.
However, things were vastly different in the second T20I, much to the disappointment of the visitors, as New Zealand handed them a defeat by a margin of 21 runs.
After being asked to bat first, New Zealand set a decent total of 176-8 in 20 overs. England tried hard in response, but they got all out in 19.5 overs for 155 runs.
The Kiwi bowlers looked impressive in their defense of the total. Mitchell Santner was particularly impressive, as he snapped up three wickets to win the Player of the Match award.
As a result, the Blackcaps have the series leveled 1-1 for the time being. Here are some of the significant take-aways from the second T20I of the series.
1. Chris Jordan's performance - A positive for England despite the loss
One of the biggest positives for England was Chris Jordan's fabulous performance in the match with both the bat and the ball.
The fast-medium bowler snatched three wickets in four overs at an economy of 5.8. All the three wickets he took were crucial as they came in the death overs.
Moreover, Jordan's batting also looked great in this match. In 19 balls he notched up 36 runs at a strike rate of 189.47.
Without Jordan's contributions, England's loss would have been a lot more one-sided.
New Zealand's all-round brilliance
It was an authoritative win for New Zealand as their players refused to allow the visitors any breathing space.
The veteran opener Martin Guptill gave New Zealand a great start with his 28-ball 41, which included three boundaries and two sixes. The batters who followed Guptill did a decent job too, and James Neesham punctuated the innings with his 22-ball 42 which played a crucial role in the team achieving a fighting total.
Santner then contributed three wickets with his bowling, never letting the English batsmen settle down.
An evenly matched series in store
New Zealand's performance in the first match was a bit lukewarm, and the England team found it easy to defeat them. However, that wasn't the case in the second T20I as the Blackcaps gave a reminder about how tough it is to beat them in their own backyard.
At the end of this match, it looks clear that England have to stretch themselves to get a positive result. The series may not be the one-sided affair that England would have hoped for at the end of the first match; the momentum is with New Zealand now.