Brilliant Bairstow and captain Stokes put on a show as England claim emphatic Trent Bridge win

By Sports Desk June 14, 2022

England's aggressive approach paid off as Jonny Bairstow and captain Ben Stokes emphatically cast New Zealand aside on day five at Trent Bridge, securing a series victory.

Victory for England looked uncertain at the start of Tuesday's play, but Stokes' side put on a show in Nottingham to win by five wickets.

Stokes (75 not out) and Bairstow (136), who fell just short of setting the fastest Test century for England, were the stars, taking the game away from New Zealand in the final session.

New Zealand resumed on 224-7, leading by 238, but Stuart Broad (3-70) dismissed Matt Henry and Kyle Jamieson to get England on their way.

Daryl Mitchell (62 n.o.) surpassed 50 but James Anderson (2-20) wrapped things up with England left needing 299 for victory.

England were unable to get through to lunch without loss, however – Zak Crawley falling to Boult (3-94) on a duck.

Ollie Pope was put down in the slips, though his fortune was out when he edged a wonderful Henry delivery through to Tom Blundell, and Joe Root failed to build on his superb first innings as he was caught and bowled by Boult on three, the former England captain's lowest Test score at home since he was dismissed for 0 at Old Trafford in the 2019 Ashes.

Opener Alex Lees' stand ended on 44 in the 26th over, and it seemed like the batting collapses that haunted Root's latter days as captain might not be confined to the past. Yet Bairstow and Stokes delivered a 179-run fifth-wicket partnership to turn the match on its head.

The damage was done in a sensational 10-over spell at the start of the third session, when England went from requiring 160 to just 50.

Bairstow set the tone by reaching his 50 with successive boundaries before reeling off five sixes in the space of three overs.

Stokes, hindered slightly by injury, did not let up on the aggression, though it was Bairstow's day when he clipped a shot through the offside to surpass 100.

Michael Bracewell was on the receiving end of two huge sixes and a one-handed four from Bairstow, whose incredible innings was ended by an edge from Boult.

Bairstow's partner in crime was on hand to, fittingly, finish matters off, though – Stokes slamming a four through the covers to seal one of England's finest Test victories.

Brilliance from Bairstow

Bairstow's post-tea onslaught was one for the ages. The Yorkshireman propelled England into pole position, delivering one of the all-time great Test innings in the style of a great white-ball thrash.

His 136 is the highest fourth-innings score by an England batter coming in at number five or lower, beating that famous knock of 135 from Stokes at Headingley in 2019 against Australia. The only disappointment for Bairstow is that he fell just one ball short of matching Gilbert Jessop's 76-ball hundred at The Oval in 1902, which still stands as the fastest Test century for England. 

Stokes era off to a flying start

After just one Test win in 17 matches, England have now won twice in the space of two weeks. Stokes and Brendon McCullum promised a fresh approach, and on this evidence, it will work a treat.

In total, 1,675 runs were scored over this Test match – the most ever seen at Trent Bridge, where the crowd were allowed in for free on Tuesday. That created a brilliant atmosphere, and they were rewarded with equally spectacular cricket, and England will go to Headingley next week aiming to wrap up a series whitewash.

Related items

  • 'Ronaldo to Atletico, why not?' – Guti believes Real Madrid legend could make controversial LaLiga return 'Ronaldo to Atletico, why not?' – Guti believes Real Madrid legend could make controversial LaLiga return

    Cristiano Ronaldo and Atletico Madrid would make a "good pairing" despite his Real Madrid past, according to Los Blancos great Guti.

    Ronaldo began Manchester United's Premier League opener against Brighton and Hove Albion on the bench on Sunday, having missed the majority of the Red Devils' pre-season campaign after reportedly expressing his desire to join a Champions League side.

    With the likes of Bayern Munich quickly ruling out a move for the 37-year-old, Atletico were touted as a potential destination for Ronaldo, who leads Madrid's all-time goalscoring charts after netting 450 times for Los Blancos between 2009 and 2018.

    Those reports were not well received by Atletico supporters, however, some of whom unveiled a banner reading 'CR7 not welcome' during a pre-season friendly against Numancia.

    Atletico president Enrique Cerezo has also refuted suggestions Ronaldo could make the controversial move, but former Madrid midfielder Guti is surprisingly enthusiastic about the prospect.

    "If in this case he decides to come to Atletico Madrid, why not? It's a great team, he's a great striker," Guti told DAZN. 

     

    "Atletico Madrid needs a good striker and why not? I think it would be a good pairing.

    "It would be strange, because Madrid loves him very much, because he is a very loved player. I think that the Real Madrid fans wouldn't mind. I think that everything Cristiano had to give to Real Madrid, he already gave.

    "If he feels happy being able to play in a great team like Atletico Madrid and in the Spanish league, which I think he wants, why not?"

    Ronaldo has earnt a reputation as chief tormentor of Atletico throughout his illustrious career; the five-time Ballon d'Or winner has scored 25 goals in 37 competitive appearances against Los Colchoneros, including a late penalty in Madrid's 4-1 extra-time Champions League final win in 2014.

  • Benzema altered his 'game and ambitions' when Ronaldo left Real Madrid Benzema altered his 'game and ambitions' when Ronaldo left Real Madrid

    Cristiano Ronaldo helped Karim Benzema "on and off the pitch" while at Real Madrid, but Los Blancos' current talisman knew he could do more when his former team-mate departed.

    Ronaldo is Madrid's all-time leading goalscorer, having netted 450 times in all competitions between 2009 and 2018, when he joined Juventus.

    Benzema has since picked up the mantle, however, scoring a remarkable 131 goals in the past four seasons. While Ronaldo's Manchester United future is in doubt, his old strike partner is thriving.

    Of players in Europe's top five leagues last term, only Robert Lewandowski (50) – who will go up against Benzema in LaLiga after his switch from Bayern Munich to Barcelona – scored more goals in all competitions than the France forward, who averaged a goal every 88 minutes.

    Asked ahead of the Super Cup clash with Eintracht Frankfurt whether Ronaldo's exit had directly benefited his own form, Benzema told a news conference: "It's true I've scored more goals but when Cristiano was here we had a different style, I provided more assists and he helped me on and off the pitch.

    "I knew I could do more [at the time] and when he left it was the time to change my game and ambitions, I'm doing that at the moment."

     

    Benzema's form has seen him emerge as a favourite to win this year's Ballon d'Or, a bid only strengthened by Madrid's success in LaLiga and the Champions League last campaign.

    But the striker is simply focused on his team's exploits, adding: "I'm not like that in terms of whether I'm the best or not, I always give my all for this club, the best club in the world.

    "I have to give more and more every year, it's true I had a very good season, but other people can comment on if I'm the best in the world. I'm focused on helping my team in matches, that's all I can say.

    "I'm not thinking about [the Ballon d'Or], there's trophies to win every year, that's very important. I always stress the importance of success for the team that leads to individual success."

    For Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti, there is little doubt that he has the best forward in world football at his disposal.

    Asked if Madrid, who wanted to sign Kylian Mbappe before Benzema's compatriot signed a new deal with Paris Saint-Germain, needed to bring in a back-up striker before the transfer window closes, Ancelotti replied: "We have strikers, plenty of them. Benzema, Mariano [Diaz], [Eden] Hazard, Rodrygo, Vinicius [Junior], have I forgotten any?

    "When you're missing the best striker in the world, there are alternatives, but it's impossible to replace Benzema, no player in the world can replace Karim. If anything happens, we will adapt."

  • Wijnaldum spoke to former Liverpool team-mate Salah before making Roma switch Wijnaldum spoke to former Liverpool team-mate Salah before making Roma switch

    Georginio Wijnaldum has revealed former Liverpool team-mate Mohamed Salah was among those who advised him to join Jose Mourinho's Roma.

    Having left Liverpool for Paris Saint-Germain on a free transfer last year, Wijnaldum headed to Roma on a season-long loan deal last week.

    Wijnaldum lifted the Champions League and Premier League trophies during a successful five-year spell at Anfield, but his impact was limited during a frustrating 2021-22 campaign in the French capital.

    While the Netherlands international made 38 appearances in all competitions for PSG last season, fellow midfielders Danilo Pereira (2,623), Marco Verratti (2,621) and Idrissa Gueye (2,043) all played more than his total of 1,992 minutes for the Ligue 1 winners.

    After becoming the latest arrival of a busy transfer window at the Stadio Olimpico, Wijnaldum said former Giallorossi winger Salah, alongside Kevin Strootman and PSG wing-back Achraf Hakimi, encouraged him to move to Italy.  

    "First of all, I wanted to come because of the effort the club put in to sign me as a player," Wijnaldum told a news conference on Tuesday. 

    "Also, I spoke with Mo Salah and Kevin Strootman about Roma, about the club and the city, and I only heard good stories about it. 

    "I even spoke with Achraf Hakimi about it, even though he played at Inter Milan, he said [Roma] was a beautiful club and a beautiful place and I would be happy here. So that convinced me a lot.

    "I know the club, we played them twice when I was at Liverpool [in the Champions League in 2018], and the atmosphere at the Olimpico was amazing – so I knew that I would be playing for a club with a great atmosphere and beautiful supporters.

    "But that was basically the only thing I knew, so I asked for some advice from Mo and Strootman and they had good stories." 

    Wijnaldum has joined the likes of Nemanja Matic and Paulo Dybala in signing for Roma ahead of the new Serie A campaign, and added the influence of Mourinho was another factor in his decision to head to Italy.

    "When I arrived, we spoke more about football things. I think his record as a manager speaks for itself," the midfielder said of the former Chelsea and Real Madrid boss.

    "The things he did in football, the prizes he won and the clubs he managed, it's unbelievable. 

    "I think every player wants to work with him and I am the same. From the moment I spoke to him, I told myself I really wanted to join the club – but that was the case even before.

    "I think the thing that convinced me the most was the amount of effort the club, through Mr [director of football, Tiago] Pinto and the manager, put in to sign me. At that moment I felt really wanted and appreciated by the club and that helped me make the decision."

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.