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That game is what Test cricket is about, says Ben Stokes after a narrow loss to NZ in second Test

Wellington : After the disappointing loss against New Zealand on Tuesday, England skipper Ben Stokes said “that game is what Test cricket is about” and it was incredible to be involved in such a thrilling contest.

New Zealand became just the fourth team ever to win a Test match after being forced to follow on when they pulled off a thrilling one-run victory over England in a classic final-day contest.

“That game is what Test cricket is about, it was just incredible. The emotions we were going through and obviously the Kiwi boys out there as well. Was incredible to be involved in such a Test match.

Everyone’s got their money’s worth,” Stokes said after the match. England had to chase down 258 for victory in the fourth innings and they looked to be in control when Joe Root (95) and Ben Stokes (33) were at the crease and less than 60 runs were required.

“It was a case of assessing the situations, we always knew that at some point in that partnership (between himself and Root), Tim was gonna have to roll the dice with something.

Wags (Wagner) came on and blew the game open for them. For myself and Joe there, that was our opportunity to pounce. Sometimes things don’t happen the way you want them to,” he said.

Neil Wagner 4/62) and Tim Southee (3/45) dug deep during a tense finale to ensure New Zealand picked up a thrilling win to level the two-match series at one game apiece.

Speaking about attacking the bouncers from the Kiwi bowlers, Stokes said: “Sometimes things don’t happen the way you want them to. With those bouncer plans, we had to make a decision and obviously, it didn’t come off for us.

It was an opportunity for us to score runs there. As soon as Waggie came on to do those bouncers, I saw it as an opportunity to maybe take 20 runs off the over and then bring the game even more in our favour.”

New Zealand’s winning margin of one-run is just the second time in the history of Test cricket that a match has been decided by that narrow margin, with the only other occurrence coming in 1993 when the West Indies pulled off a similar triumph over Australia in Adelaide.



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