Ruthless England take 2-0 series lead

Ruthless England take 2-0 series lead


England displayed their class with another ruthless performance in the second T20I at Old Trafford, overpowering New Zealand by a commanding 95 runs to take a 2-0 lead in the series. The hosts flexed their batting muscle with Jonny Bairstow and Harry Brook slamming half-centuries to take the team to 198/4 before Gus Atkinson registered figures of 4 for 20 on debut to rattle the Blackcaps and close out a dominant win for Jos Buttler’s side.

England got off to a slow start in the powerplay after Jos Buttler opted to bat first. Jonny Bairstow managed just 24 of his first 25 deliveries, while Will Jacks and Dawid Malan departed in successive overs to make it 44/2 after seven. However, the Blackcaps could only keep England at bay for so long. Harry Brook’s arrival changed the complexion of the innings, with the number four sharing a towering 131-run stand from 65 balls alongside Jonny Bairstow to drive England to an imposing total.

After taking a few overs to settle down, Bairstow finally got going with a pair of boundaries against Mitchell Santner in the ninth over, while Brook joined the act by carting Ish Sodhi for successive sixes through the off-side. The Kiwis struggled to contain the offensive firepower of Bairstow and Brook through the back end of the innings as the pair smashed 89 runs between overs 11-17.

Brook managed a 30-ball half-century and struck ten boundaries in his 36-ball 67, while Bairstow batted through the innings for his unbeaten 86. Adam Milne did pull things back for New Zealand with a superb penultimate over to keep England under 200, but the damage was already done through the middle to set up the victory for the hosts.

In reply, the Blackcaps chase never got going as both Kiwi openers departed inside three overs. Gus Atkinson picked up his maiden international wicket four balls into his debut, with Conway holing out to deep square leg, while Finn Allen skied a slower one from Sam Curran to Will Jacks.

Tim Seifert and Glenn Phillips staged a brief recovery for the visitors, taking New Zealand to 42/2 to end the powerplay, but the chase fell apart through the middle period. The wickets continued to tumble as New Zealand struggled to keep up with the steep asking rate, with Adil Rashid removing Glenn Phillips, Liam Livingstone besting Mark Chapman, and Daryl Mitchell falling for a golden duck to Brydon Carse.

Mitchell’s dismissal left the Kiwis reeling at 74/5, and the wheels came off in a hurry at the death as England picked up the final five wickets for just 15 runs, dismissing New Zealand for 103 to complete a resounding win in Manchester.