England sweep Trent Bridge Test

Updated: 25 February 2007 09:07 IST

Graham Thorpe's unbeaten 104 saw England to a four wicket win in the third Test against New Zealand at Trent Bridge.

England sweep Trent Bridge Test

Nottingham:

Graham Thorpe's unbeaten 104 saw England to a four wicket win in the third Test against New Zealand at Trent Bridge. England's victory, with more than a day to spare, saw them take the three-match series 3-0 when they finished on 284 for six, a record fourth innings total to win a Trent Bridge Test. It was the first time they had whitewashed a side in a major Test series since a 3-0 home defeat of New Zealand in 1978. Surrey left-hander Thorpe's 14th Test hundred, his first at Trent Bridge since he made 114 not out on debut against Australia in 1993, ultimately saw him face 171 balls with 13 fours. Together with Ashley Giles, 36 not out, he put on an unbroken 70 in 84 balls that saw England home. Left-arm spinner Giles, who earlier took his best Test innings figures in England of four for 46, faced 45 balls with six fours, having made 45 in England's first innings. Afterwards England captain Michael Vaughan, whose side have now won six of their seven Tests this year with one draw after a 3-0 triumph away to the West Indies, said, "There's always a doubt when you chase 280. But we believed we were just one partnership away from getting the total." Dejected New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming said his side had been undone by an injury crisis that saw several players sidelined at various times as well as England's resilience. "It's been very close at times. But we lost players with a lot of skill," Fleming said. New Zealand fast bowler Shane Bond missed the whole series and Fleming added, "Bond could have had a massive impact. He would have provided us with a spearhead." Thorpe, 34, England's most experienced batsman, came to the crease in his 90th Test with the side in trouble at 46 for three. But by the time they claimed the extra half hour, England were on their way at 259 for six. New Zealand all-rounder Chris Cairns, 34 today and in his 62nd and last Test before retirement, took four for 108 and ended with match figures of nine for 187, his best against England. But it was not enough and Giles marked the start of the extra half hour by hooking Cairns for four. England started the final session on 134 for four with Thorpe 34 not out. They needed 150 more runs for victory after Cairns had struck with the last ball before tea to remove 'dangerman' Mark Butcher for 59, the all-rounder's third lbw of the innings. (PTI)



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