New Zealand bowler Ish Sodhi’s valiant efforts with the bat helped the host win the series after a nerve wrecking finish in the second Test. As a result, England’s poor form on overseas tours continues.
Meanwhile, the Kiwis secured their first series win over England since 1999 and their first at home since 1983-84.
However, the host fought hard with fielders camped around the bat for the entirety of the final session. They also endured a stunningly terrible start to the day’s play when they lost two wickets to Stuart Broad including their last-day marshall, Kane Williamson.
But after that, the Kiwis had enough heroes to fill the gaps in the middle-order including Tom Latham’s 207-ball 83.
Colin de Grandhomme also contributed highly, in a severely fought all-round contest.
However, it was a brilliant, gritty eight-wicket stand between Ish Sodhi and Neil Wagner that saved the day for New Zealand. The pair added 37 runs in 31.2 overs which sealed the visitor’s fate.
While Sodhi batted for 168 deliveries for his 56, Wagner played 103 deliveries for his seven.
The umpires called it for the day, as Wagner departed off an inside edge from Root.
Meanwhile, throughout the final day, England believed they were in a race against the setting sun. However, it was New Zealand’s lower-order batsmen, who denied to throw away the game without a fight.
Previously, England dominated the major part of the Test taking an early lead in the first innings. Bairstow’s brilliant hundred helped the three lions post a good score in their first essay.
In reply, the Black Caps survived an early collapse to register 278 banking on their lower middle-order. Eventually, England set a daunting target of 382 to crawl back in the series.
England needed ten wickets on the final day to end their winter on a positive note. But some fighting spirit from their bowlers helped them seal the series. England had pushed to the bitter end of a bitterly disappointing winter, but their quest for a first overseas victory since October 2016 will now be extended at least until the tour of Sri Lanka in six months’ time.