England held on to win a thrilling third one-day international by four runs, despite a classy century from New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.

Cricket New Zealand v England 4th ODI Dunedin Wednesday 7th March

England are 3rd in the ICC ODI rankings, New Zealand 4th and both sides are in great form in the format. On an otherwise disappointing tour England beat Australia 4-1 either side of the New Year whilst in their recent home series New Zealand beat the West Indies 3-0 and Pakistan 5-0 in ODIs

England are a dangerous ODI side, playing a much more aggressive brand of cricket after their debacle in the 2015 world cup. They bat very deep with a number of all rounders lengthening the order and with the one exception of missing a match winning spinner have talented bowlers with a range of options and despite their tribulations in other formats go well in ODIs. Unlike T20 they aren’t hampered by a lack of specialists and unlike Test cricket if on flat pitches, they can overcome the lack of match winning bowling depth.

New Zealand though are also a fine team able to play in a variety of manners. Guptill and Munro can blast at the top of the order if need be while Williamson and Taylor can accumulate in the middle order. Southee and Boult are experienced quick bowlers and in Mitchell Santner they have one of the fastest developing spinners in the limited overs game

I expect this to be a be very closely fought series between well matched sides, 3-2 either way is my expected result. What may tip the balance in New Zealand’s favour is the punishing schedule England have been on since October with a lot of matches and travel.

England held on to win a thrilling third one-day international by four runs, despite a classy century from New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.

On a difficult surface, England battled to 234, a total that looked plenty when the hosts slipped from 80-1 to 103-6.Williamson then added 96 with Mitchell Santner and reached 100 in the 49th over, leaving 15 to get from the 50th.

He hit Chris Woakes’ third ball for six but could not find the required maximum from the final delivery in Wellington.England go 2-1 up and can seal the series in Dunedin on Wednesday.

Victory in a match that begins at 22:00 GMT on Tuesday would give England their fifth successive ODI series success as they build towards the 2019 World Cup on home soil.

That World Cup ambition seemed particularly pertinent in Wellington, a ground where England suffered their must crushing defeat in their abject 2015 tournament – a nine wicket loss to New Zealand in a day-nighter completed before the floodlights were turned on.
Here, Eoin Morgan’s improving side adapted to the tricky conditions. Their batsmen showed the required patience and application, spinners Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali dismantled the New Zealand middle order and the death bowling did not crack under the pressure of a tight finish.

Whereas victory in the second ODI in Tauranga was an all-round demolition of the Black Caps, this was a streetwise and intelligent performance, even if England were almost denied by the brilliant Williamson.
For this game in Dunedin Iwould expect New Zealand to equal the series on what is a ground where weather often plays a part

New Zealand can be backed at 11/8 with Bet365 as England are 10/11 favourites having won the last two games.