The visitors secured a six-wicket victory, resulting in the four-match series ending tied at 2-2.
Jonny Bairstow displayed his explosive form, scoring 73 off 41 balls as the T20 world champions England seemed poised for a substantial total, reaching 105/1 in 11.1 overs. However, New Zealand managed to strike back, taking five wickets for just 45 runs. Left-arm spinner Santner played a pivotal role, delivering a fine performance with figures of 3/30.
New Zealand maintained control during their chase, with Seifert contributing 48 runs off 32 balls, and the in-form Glenn Phillips adding 42 off 25, while Mark Chapman’s unbeaten 40 off 25 balls ensured a comfortable victory with 16 balls to spare.
Seifert showcased his hitting prowess by smashing Brydon Carse and Luke Wood for sixes before eventually getting caught and bowled by teenage leg-spinner Rehan Ahmed, who finished with figures of 2/27 upon his return to the team.
The tour will now move to a four-match ODI series, starting with the first match in Cardiff on Friday. This series serves as part of England’s preparations for the upcoming title defence in the World Cup in India, which is scheduled to begin next month.
The T20 series witnessed two dominant wins by England in the first two matches, with victories by seven wickets and 95 runs, before New Zealand bounced back with an equally emphatic 74-run win at Edgbaston on Sunday.
“We were far from our best in the first two games and the last two have been closer to what this side is about,” New Zealand captain Tim Southee said at the presentation ceremony.
“They (England) got off to a great start tonight but we knew that if we kept taking wickets it was the best way to slow them down. We were trying to be smart and make them take aggressive options.”
Moeen Ali, who stood in as England captain in the absense of rested Jos Butler, said: “They (New Zealand) bowled really well but we just lost some momentum after the powerplay, so that was disappointing.”
He added: “They had a brilliant start with the bat too and then we couldn’t wrestle it back.”
After winning the toss, England reached a comfortable 105-1 in the 11th over. However, New Zealand’s Santner played a pivotal role in their bowling effort, leading a remarkable fightback. He claimed valuable wickets, with the highlight being the dismissal of Bairstow, whose played a dominant knock and looked ominous.
Bairstow’s aggressive batting took center stage during the powerplay, as he dispatched pacemen Matt Henry and Kyle Jamieson for three leg-side sixes. However, his aggressive charge came to an end when he failed to clear the long-on fielder while attempting to loft Santner down the ground.
Ish Sodhi, another of New Zealand’s spinners, induced England’s promising young talent Harry Brook (who was left out of England’s provisional World Cup squad) to hole out for just four runs. Santner further strengthened New Zealand’s position by dismissing both Malan and Moeen in the 16th over.
Bairstow suffered a shoulder injury while batting, which led to regular white-ball keeper Buttler being drafted in as an emergency wicketkeeper.
(With agency inputs)