England's cricketers answer their critics against New Zealand

Cricket

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue

With England 30-4 and their captain out for 16, the vultures were circling over the corpse of English cricket. With two second innings wickets down and England still 109 behind, the flies were taking an interest too. However, Cook burst into life with an innings of 162 which inspired an England win by 124 runs.

The electric shock that restarted England's cricketing heart came from young guns Root, Stokes and Wood who showed not just skill but also a will to win and a sense that they were enjoying the game.

There haven't been many smiles on the pitch in recent times and with England playing more positive cricket, the team were upbeat in more ways than one.

To further the happy mood, England have appointed a new coach. With the media's gaze directed at Jason Gillespie, England plumped for the lower profile but more experienced Trevor Bayliss. Signing an Australian coach may raise eyebrows in some English quarters but their was no obvious English candidate.

Perhaps the only English cricketer without a smile on his face at the moment is Kevin Pietersen. Though Ballance and Lyth failed in this Test, England's overall performance has relegated the former England star's saga to today's fish and chip papers. The walking ego is being ignored.