England beat NZ in fifth ODI to win series
Christchurch: A masterful century by Jonny Bairstow saw England cruise to a seven-wicket win in the deciding one-day international against New Zealand to wrap up the series 3-2 in Christchurch on Saturday.
Bairstow's 104 off 60 deliveries, backed by 61 from fellow opener Alex Hales transformed the winner-takes-all showdown from an expected tight contest into a one-way event.
New Zealand, sent in to bat, struggled to 223 with the last wicket falling on the penultimate ball and England knocked off their target in 32.4 overs with Ben Stokes finishing the match with a six. Both sides were hit with late replacements but with marked differences.
New Zealand's batting maestro Ross Taylor failed a late fitness test and was replaced by Mark Chapman who made a three-ball duck.
England lost Jason Roy to a back spasm and his replacement Hales opened with Bairstow in a 155-run stand for the first wicket. Hales was the second wicket to fall when England were on 177 and just 47 runs short of victory.
Eoin Morgan had a short stay for eight while Ben Stokes was 26 not out at the end with Joe Root on 23.
England's domination began at the start of the day when Morgan won the toss and elected to bowl.
Midway through the 26th over, New Zealand were 93 for six while England were 192 for two at the same stage.
Bairstow toyed with the best of New Zealand's bowling stocks as he smacked nine fours and six sixes.