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Ali, Rashid spin England to dramatic win over NZ

Ben Stokes was in fine form in the second game

Chris Woakes's calmness overcame Kane Williamson's masterclass in a low-scoring thriller to help England take a 2-1 lead with a four-run win over New Zealand in the third One-Day International in Wellington on Saturday (March 3).

Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan and Stokes had all failed to get their strike rate above a run a ball. New Zealand's Ish Sodhi got three wickets.

But Curran made sure New Zealand still needed 15 off Woakes' final six balls and, despite lashing a six over deep square leg, Williamson could not get them over the line.

New Zealand appeared to have the game in their hands at 80 for one in the 18th over, before Ali and Rashid turned the match with five wickets for 23 runs in a 41-ball burst.

It had looked certain that the "curse of the Cake Tin" would strike again and England would lose their fifth one-day global in five they have played at this rugby stadium that doubles up as a cricket ground.

Whereas victory in the second ODI in Tauranga was an all-round demolition of the Black Caps, this was a streetwise and intelligent adaptation in tricky conditions, even if they were nearly denied by the brilliant Williamson.

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He also saw a chunk of his now unsponsored bat broken off by a ball from the strictly medium-paced Colin de Grandhomme, who returned old-fashioned miserly figures of one for 24 off his 10 overs.

Mark Chapman (8) was the first to fall, chipping Moeen to point, before Tom Latham fell lbw to the very next ball and Henry Nicholls (0) then was hit in-front by Rashid in the following over. He scored 20 runs so far.

Martin Guptill was dismissed for just four runs as England looked to exact revenge for their poor start, but Colin Munro - who could also have been taken by Root - rallied with seven fours and 49 runs to give his side momentum. We were in a position of strength after 15 overs or so in our innings and then we stumbled a bit, lost wickets and couldn't play as positively as we would have liked.

"It was a brilliant game of cricket, again". It took a huge amount of commitment and over-thinking from me and Ben to [work out what a good score is].

England have played four previous ODIs at the Westpac, but are yet to win one - bowled out for 89, 130, and 123 respectively, and then making 309 for 6, before being beaten by nine wickets by Sri Lanka. "It was a tight game and could have gone either way".

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