New Zealand beat England by 1 run in Wellington to become fourth team in Test history to win after the union

New Zealand achieved one of the big wins in Test match, beating England by 1 run in Wellington and becoming only the fourth team to win after a win.

The win split the two-game series 1-1 but the bigger question for England is skipper Ben Stokes’ fitness less than four months before the Ashes series against Australia on home soil.

England batted first after losing the toss, declaring at 8-435 before leading the Black Caps to 209. They forced the follow-on but New Zealand hit back to make 483 and set a target of 258.

England started Day 5 1-48 and needed 210 to win the series. They got as close as they could before James Anderson edged in on the keeper to let the tourists off for 256 on the tee.

However, in a dramatic first session, England lost four wickets for 27 runs in just under eight overs.

That included a nightmarish call for a fast single from former skipper Joe Root, which resulted in star batsman Harry Brook running for a diamond duck without facing a ball.

But Root and Stokes then rallied into a great partnership.

Stokes is a match-winning all-rounder, but he retired from bowling due to an ongoing problem with his knee.

England cricket captain Ben Stokes bends over the crease in discomfort as he holds his left knee.
England’s Ben Stokes struggled with knee pain and scored 33 balls from 116 before sinking Tom Latham.(AP: Photosport/Andrew Cornaga)

In Wellington, Stokes got himself into a bid to break through on day three as New Zealand hit back after the follow-on.

However, his spell only lasted two overs and he was later spotted limping on the field. Stokes came in at 5-80, with the tourists needing another 178 for the win, and Stokes dug in while playing a couple of shots.

It quickly became apparent that Stokes had serious knee problems. He reverted to a method where he stood and attempted to hit fours. On the other end, Root would only take a single if Stokes could saunter through.

The pair began to rectify the situation, with England sitting 5-168 at lunch and needing 90 more to win.

Finally, a struggling Stokes attempted to heave Neil Wagner into the middle of the wicket and skied to Latham for 33 balls from 116. New Zealand beat England by 1 run in Wellington to become fourth team in Test history to win after the union

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