Getting Taylor and Williamson key if England are to level series

Bat is without doubt bettering ball in the electric one-day series between England and New Zealand, but despite their 2-1 lead the Kiwis’ lack of depth in that department could see them come unstuck in the fourth ODI at Trent Bridge.

Economy rates are beyond repair after the opening three encounters of the series, with only two men to have played more than once in the series from either team able to boast a figure under six per over.

While the ball flys to all parts it has actually been England who have shown the better form in the discipline, with the Black Caps leaning heavily on two experienced campaigners to score the bulk of their runs.

Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson have registered 286 and 256 runs respectively over the course of the series and average an eye-watering 143.00 and 85.33 each.

No other visitor has managed to get into triple figures for the series however, with the next highest average coming in the form of Mitchell Santner’s 25.50.

Conversely, England have three players with more than 150 runs to their name and a further two more who have just crept into the hundreds. Four of the squad average over 50 for the series, although one of those is Liam Plunkett, a fast bowler now injured.

Regardless of his absence, those figures indicate that England’s new attacking mentality coupled with their lengthy batting order is a recipe for longer success.

Should the England bowlers manage to get Taylor and Williamson, who are 7/2 and 3/1 to be the Kiwis’ top scorers at Nottingham, early, odds of 11/10 about a home win will look far too long.

Of course, should the pair embark on a partnership similar to the 206 they put on in the 3rd ODI then 8/11 favouritism on Brendon McCullum’s men looks wholly justified.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Matt Wiggins

No idyllic sound comes close to leather on willow for Matt, whose previous experience includes stints with Spin Magazine and Surrey County Cricket Club. It's not just cricket that interests him though, with football, golf, tennis and any American sport not played on ice all high on his list of favourites.