New Zealand v England Third ODI Betting: Taylor absence hurts Kiwis

England's Ben Stokes
Stokes won man of the match last time out

Ed Hawkins takes at look at the team news and markets ahead of the contest in Wellington late on Friday night and sides with England...

"Stokes, of course, grabbed the headlines thanks to an unbeaten 63. He picked up the player of the match award. He is reminding everyone just how good he is"

New Zealand v England
Saturday 3 March 01:00 GMT
TV: live on Sky Sports

Williamson in, Taylor out

New Zealand have good news and bad news. Kane Williamson, the skipper, returns from a hamstring injury having missed the defeat at the Bay Oval. Ross Taylor, however, is out with a quad injury.

New Zealand can ill afford to lose a player of Taylor's quality and experience. As we often say when discussing their strengths and weaknesses, they have been desperately searching for an extra middle-order action man for years. With no success.

Mark Chapman, who replaced Williamson, will continue as the latest to audition. He will bat at No 4. Henry Nicholls, who has been tried before - with moderate success - gets another opportunity to nail down a place.

The hosts will decide whether to go for spin or pace. If it's the former Ish Sodhi will stay on. If not, Lockie Ferguson comes in.

Martin Guptill is in decent touch with the bat and Mitchell Santner, who top scored last time, has taken a liking to England's attack. They need Colin Munro to step up, though.

England hit the high notes

England produced a superb performance to level the series. Bowling first, they restricted the Kiwis to just 223 and that was never going to be enough against a powerful batting line-up.

It was a complete performance in the field. They were sharp in the field, executing four run outs and every bowler contributed. Chris Woakes and Ben Stokes took two wickets apiece but Adil Rashid, Moeen Ali and David Willey were miserly.

Willey's role is interesting. In the last two games he has bowled well up front but has not completed his overs. At the Bay Oval he bowled five for just 16 runs but was not considered again.

England have paired Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow as openers and that has a more reliable look to it than when Alex Hales was there.

Stokes, of course, grabbed the headlines thanks to an unbeaten 63. He picked up the player of the match award. He is reminding everyone just how good he is.

Kiwis strong record at the Westpac

The last 12 first-innings scores (most recent first with 1/2 denoting game won by side batting first or second) in day-night games at the Westpac read: 271-1/281-2/393-1/341-1/123-2/210-2/287-1/303-1/253-2/124-1/241-2/128-2. That gives us an average of 246. The mixed bag makes an innings runs bet risky but there could be value for a bust of 300. New Zealand have a strong record on the ground, losing only five from 15.

Tourists the bet to put past behind them

England come full circle with this match. In the 2015 World Cup at this venue they were humiliated by New Zealand, being bowled out for 123. They died wondering. Three years on a new England could be razed for a different reason - their attacking gusto.

That's our chief concern when considering prices of 1.715/7. For game two they were 1.804/5 so faith in the hosts is disappearing quickly.

It is true that seam and swing can make batting difficult at the Westpac. And England have suffered badly in the past. They have played three and been hammered three times. It is unlikely to worry them, though.

Taylor's absence is key. New Zealand's win percentage with their anchorman in the last five years against the established nations is 64 per cent. Without him it is 43 per cent. So we are prepared to get with the tourists.

Guptill's feelgood vibe

Williamson has an excellent record at the Westpac. He has 322 runs in seven innings. Guptill, though, could take some stopping. He recorded the second-highest ODI score there with an unbeaten 237 in the World Cup quarter-final against the West Indies. Aside from that score, he has not always done so well - 399 runs in nine innings. Still, he will be feeling very confident. Williamson is 4.3100/30 and Guptill 4.57/2.

Root feels at home

In the 2015 World Cup Joe Root made a brilliant 121 on the ground against Sri Lanka as England posted 309. Alas, they were probably about 30 runs short because Sri Lanka got up to win it with the loss of just one wicket. Root is 4.3100/30 for top England batsman and it is fair to say he is due. Stokes is 7.06/1.

Ed Hawkins P-L

2018: +13.34
2017: +12pts
2016: +18.1pts
2015: +38pts
2014: +31.5pts
2013: +25pts
Based only on available prices. Does not include back-to-lay in-running match advice or commission rate. Figures 2013-2016 on 1pt level stakes. New points system (0.5pt-5) introduced for 2017. Includes Hawk-Eye stats column p-l

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