Sidebottom seals England victory

Nottingham, June 8:

Ryan Sidebottom’s devastating spell of four wickets for five runs in 19 balls propelled England to an innings and nine run third Test victory against New Zealand at Trent Bridge.

England’s win, achieved before lunch on the fourth day, saw them take the three-match series 2-0. Left-arm quick Sidebottom (6-77) routed the New Zealand lower order.

But it was fellow fast bowler and man of the match James Anderson, with a Test best 7-43 in the first innings, who did the decisive damage that made New Zealand follow-on.

Only Jacob Oram, with an unbeaten 39-ball 50 featuring two sixes and six fours, offered much resistance on Sunday.

New Zealand resumed the day on 177-5 — still 64 runs shy of making England bat again — after suffering the double blow of losing Brendon McCullum (71) and Daniel Flynn (49) shortly before stumps on Saturday. Gareth Hopkins had added just five to his overnight score of seven when he edged Sidebottom to Tim Ambrose.

Oram square cut Stuart Broad and then pulled the fast bowler for successive fours. And when the 21-year-old quick dropped short again, to expose the tall all-rounder’s supposed weakness

against the rising ball, Oram hooked him for the first six of the match.

At the other end Vettori gave his wicket away when driving Sidebottom to Kevin Pietersen in the gully.

Tailenders Kyle Mills and Iain O’Brien were both caught in the slips by Sidebottom before Anderson finished the match when last man Chris Martin was caught at second slip by Paul Collingwood. New Zealand, as was the case during their six-wicket second Test defeat, had enjoyed some early success in this match and reduced England to 86-5.

But a stand of 161 between Pietersen (115) and Ambrose (67) got England back into the match before tailenders Broad (64) and Anderson (28) both recorded their Test-best scores.

The Black Caps were bowled out for 123 — 42 short of avoiding the follow-on. However, one concern for England was the form of struggling Ian Bell and Collingwood to reach the benchmark first innings score of 400.