England vs New Zealand player ratings: Alastair Cook impresses, Ian Bell in worrying decline

A look back at the winners and losers from the drawn series

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The Independent Online

England and New Zealand ended an entertaining series with one Test each. Here, Charles Reynolds analyses the individual performances of both teams...


Adam Lyth: Failed on debut at Lord’s but bounced back with century at Headingley. Should get a good run as Cook’s opening partner. 7

Alastair Cook: Roared back into form with the bat, setting up victory at Lord’s with a hundred and made two half-centuries in Leeds. Rightly England’s man of the series. 9 

Gary Ballance: Failed to register a decent score in all four innings, needs to rediscover form in county cricket. 3

Ian Bell: A poor series for the experienced batsman, has appeared worryingly in decline recently. 3

Joe Root: Excellent at Lord’s, failed twice at Headingley. Remains a vital player for England. 7

Ben Stokes: Explosive man of the match performance at Lord’s showed he can be key man for England this summer. 8

Jos Buttler: Struggled at times with the gloves, but showed fight with the bat in second dig at Headingley. 6

Moeen Ali: Struggled for consistency with the ball and shunted down to eight in the batting order didn’t fully give him chance to shine with the bat either. Looks a little short of confidence. 5

Mark Wood: Showed glimpses of being an exciting new talent, needs protecting from injury. 7

Stuart Broad: Still maddeningly hot and cold as a player. Rediscovered some touch with the bat and at times was deadly with the ball, at others was fairly abysmal. 6

James Anderson: Might have claimed his 400th Test wicket, but six in total for the series meant it wasn’t one to write home about for the seamer. 5


Tom Latham: Looked a well organised player and contributed with two 50s in the series in a traditionally problematic spot for the Black Caps. 6

Martin Guptill: Rather boom or bust, with palindromic scores of 70,0,0 and 70. 5

Kane Williamson: Looks unbeatable when set, but failed in innings after brilliant century at Lord’s. 7

Ross Taylor: Not in great touch but managed to contribute a few ugly runs when needed. 6

Brendan McCullum: Captained well, but guilty of perhaps being too gung-ho with the bat. Was better at Headingley though. 6

Luke Ronchi: Enjoyed an excellent debut Test innings, adds menace to New Zealand’s lower order. 7

BJ Watling: Batted excellently in both games. Should give up wicketkeeping gloves more if this is the effect. 8

Mark Craig: Lacked control with the ball often, but capable of taking wickets and a useful tail end batsman. 6

Tim Southee: Not his best series, particularly at Lord’s, but improved in 2nd Test, perhaps shaking off a bit of rustiness. 6

Matt Henry: A promising first two Test matches. 7

Trent Boult: Deadly with the new ball. New Zealand’s man of the series. 9

Corey Anderson: Injured after first game, but showed glimpse of talent with the bat at Lord’s in 2nd innings. 6