Wellington, Jun 1 (ANI): New Zealand opener Martin Guptill has helped lead his team home by ushering in a five-wicket win in the one-day international (ODI) series opener at Lord's against England with his century score.
New Zealand became frontrunners for back-to-back ODI series victories in England as Guptill bounced back from a poor comeback Test at Headingley with a cool-headed 103 not out, overhauling Black Caps target of 228 with 19 balls to spare, Stuff.co.nz reports.
The 123-ball knock was Guptill's third century in his 70th ODI, and he raised it with a hooked boundary off English bowler Tim Bresnan to secure the winning runs after surviving a nervous decision review system challenge, the report further said.
According to the report, the score was Guptill's first ODI innings since his matchwinning 27 not out with a torn hamstring in Hamilton in February as compared to the meagre four runs from two innings at the Headingley Test.
The report further said that New Zealand appeared to have few scars from their 2-0 loss in the recent Test series against England, adding that the ODIs are their top focus, which they proved with their performances in the match.
New Zealand's victory chase was boosted by the injury withdrawals of England pacemen Stuart Broad (knee) and Steven Finn (shin soreness) for the first two matches, although New Zealand had their own injury problems with Daniel Vettori failing a fitness test on his troublesome left Achilles tendon.
According to the report, Vettori was poised to return for his first ODI since March 2011 but pulled up lame on match morning, with his participation at the Rose Bowl also in doubt.
New Zealand can win the three-match series if they win at the second match at the Rose Bowl in Hampshire Sunday night, five years after their 3-1 ODI series victory in England, the report added. (ANI)