London [UK]: A record-breaking knock by Ben Stokes coupled with solid performances by bowlers guided an all-round England to a 181-run win over New Zealand in the third ODI of the four-match series at The Oval on Wednesday.
With this win, England leads the series 2-1, with one more game to go.
Put to bat first by Kiwis, England was once again rocked by quick powerplay wickets by Trent Boult, who dismissed Jonny Bairstow for a golden duck and Joe Root for just four, continuing the batter's woeful run in ODIs.
England was reduced to 13/2 and Stokes came to rebuild the innings at such a crucial point. He found a batting partner in an ever-consistent Dawid Malan, who guided the team through the remainder of the powerplay, with 55/2 at the end of 10 overs.
England reached the 100-run mark in 16.2 overs. Malan reached his fifth ODI fifty in 52 balls, with eight fours while Stokes reached his fifty in 44 balls, with nine fours. The duo reached their century stand in just 91 balls.
Stokes after a point started dealing in sixes and duo reached 150-run partnership in just 119 balls, showcasing remarkable acceleration. 200 runs were up for England in 27 overs.
Stokes reached his fourth ODI century in just 76 balls. However, Malan missed out on his fifth ODI ton, dismissed by Boult for 96 in 95 balls (12 fours and a six) after being caught by wicketkeeper Tom Latham. England was 212/3 in 30.1 overs.
Skipper Jos Buttler joined Stokes and the duo continued with their carnage. Stokes reached his 150 in just 105 balls. Glenn Phillips ended the partnership worth 78 runs between the duo, dismissing Buttler for 38 off 24 balls, with six fours and a six. England was 290/4 in 37.5 overs. England reached the 300-run mark in 39.4 overs.
Stokes was finally dismissed by Ben Lister for a record-breaking 182 off 124 balls, consisting of 15 fours and nine sixes. He went past Jason Roy (180) to register the highest ODI score by an England player. A catch by Will Young at square leg reduced England to 348/6 in 44.3 overs.
Liam Livingstone, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Sam Curran etc were dismissed quickly, bundling out England for 368 in 48.1 overs.
Boult (5/51) was the pick of the bowlers for NZ. Lister (3/69) also bowled well. Lockie Ferguson, Phillips got one wicket each.
In the chase of 369, the England pace trio of Woakes, Reece Topley and Sam Curran shook the Kiwi top-order as they could manage only 36/3 in the powerplay and had sunk to 70/5 in 17 overs. None of the top five batters could even touch 20 runs.
Phillips stitched a useful 46-run stand with Rachin Ravindra to take NZ beyond the 100-run mark in 22.1 overs. But spinner Moeen Ali cleaned up Rachin for 28, ending the partnership. Another 57-run partnership followed between Phillips and Kyle Jamieson (14). The total proved to be too much for Kiwis and other than Phillips (72 in 76 balls with five fours and two sixes), nobody could do much.
Kiwis were bundled out for 187 in 39 overs.
Woakes (3/31) and Livingstone (3/16) were the top bowlers for Kiwis. Topley (2/31) also bowled well, while Curran, Ali got one each.
Stokes took home the 'Player of the Match' award.