Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

New Zealand fought back strongly after being forced to follow-on to register a thrilling one run victory over England in the second Test match in Wellington on Tuesday.

History was created in Wellington as New Zealand became just the fourth team ever to win a Test match after being forced to follow on.

The match had constant twist and turn throughout. On the final day, Joe Root scored 95 and stitched a partnership of 121 runs with Ben Stokes (33) which appeared to have almost sealed English victory and a 2-0 win in the series.

However, Kiwis had other plans in mind. Root and Stokes were out within a run of each other with 56 runs still needed and the match which had been heading England’s way tilted back in favor of New Zealand again. 

The lower batting order was exposed. Wicket-keeper batsman Ben Foakes (35) fought valiantly, but could not get support from the other end. Neil Wagner (4/62) was the pick of the bowlers for the Kiwis. Wagner was supported well by captain Tim Southee (3/45) and Matt Henry (2/75).

In reply to England’s first innings score of 435, New Zealand were bundled out for 209. After being forced to follow on, they fought back well to score 483 with experienced Kane Williamson (132) hitting a brilliant ton. However, England were stunned in their second innings as they were skittled out for 256 and in the process lost by a whisker.

The thrilling one run win by the Kiwis has set Twitter in frenzy with several fans congratulating New Zealand for their fighting spirit.

“Test cricket is the best!! What a cracker of a game. NZ wins by 1 run and that too coming out from a follow on. A great match and an absolute thriller. Nothing replaces Test cricket. Wagner pulled out his best and gave it all. Morning done absolutely right,” tweeted a fan.

“Test cricket at its best. What a match. New Zealand won by one run,” wrote another fan.

“What a finish in Wellington as Neil Wagner dismisses James Anderson to ensure New Zealand register a famous one-run victory over England,” tweeted ICC.