nsucurrent.com March 22, 2018

Morgan confident of avoiding repeat New Zealand thrashing

07 June 2017, 03:34 | Colleen Roy

England booked a place in the Champions Trophy semi-finals with an 87-run win over New Zealand in Cardiff.

England conclude their group-stage fixtures with a showdown with world champions Australia at Edgbaston on Saturday, a crucial game for their opponents as their qualification remains in the balance.

Powered by a late flourish from Jos Buttler (61 n o, 48b, 2×4, 2×6) and half centuries by Joe Root (64, 65b, 5×4, 2×6) and Alex Hales (56, 62b, 3×4, 2×6), England scored 310 against New Zealand. However, Martin Guptill (27) and Kane Williamson (87) hit five boundaries in a span of three overs to release the pressure as New Zealand reached 40 for one in 10 overs.

Williamson's exit sparked a collapse that saw New Zealand lose their last eight wickets for 65 runs on the way to a total of 223 all out.

England made one change from the side that beat Bangladesh by eight wickets in their Group A opener at the Oval last week, with leg-spinner Adil Rashid replacing Chris Woakes after the paceman suffered a tournament-ending side strain.

With Australia sitting on 2 points in 2 games after successive washouts, this becomes New Zealand's chance to double their chances of making it to the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy. The victor will then hope England can do them a favour when they take on Australia in an Ashes series precursor at Edgbaston 24 hours later.

· New Zealand hold the upper hand when it comes to the overall ODI record between these sides; winning 41 to England's 36 (tied two and four no results). His departure brought England skipper Eoin Morgan to the crease.

Morgans men are through to the Champions Trophy semi-finals following their victory over New Zealand, but the same can not be said for the Aussies, who will be out of the tournament should England win.

Williamson fell to a ball from Wood that leapt at him from short of a length to take his glove for caught-behind.

With two straight victories, England are sitting on top of the table with four points and a big, positive run-rate.

Guptill said his role as an opener was to provide some stability and set up a platform to launch the New Zealand innings.

England's bowling wasn't the best in the first match against Bangladesh, but it will need to be against the Kiwis, or else that semifinal spot will have to wait.

All-rounder Ben Stokes played well for his 48 before getting out as Corey Anderson returned best figures of 3/55 while Adam Milne also took three wickets for the cost of 79 runs.

It was to be a similar story for Joe Root who joined Hales in a second wicket stand of 81.

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