As a result of lion-hearted paceman Neil Wagner's heroics, New Zealand defeated England by one run, becoming only the fourth team in Test history to triumph after being asked to follow-on.
At noon, New Zealand's chances were diminished after setting England 258 to win as Joe Root (95) and captain Ben Stokes (33) produced a 121-run stand to cut the deficit to 57 runs with five wickets in hand. Enter Wagner, who had bled more than eight runs an over in the third innings when England romped to a 267-run win in the series-opener at Mount Maunganui. He had both Root and Stokes out slogging in Wellington then nervelessly held catches in the deep to help remove Stuart Broad (11) and wicketkeeper Ben Foakes for 35.
Following Foakes' dismissal, Jack Leach and Anderson needed seven runs to win. Anderson hit a boundary off Wagner to reduce the necessary score to two runs.
Wagner came again and had Anderson caught down the leg side for four to trigger jubilation among his teammates and the home fans in the crowd. With the two-match series ending 1-1, the hosts preserved their unbeaten record at home dating back to 2017. They also handed England only their second defeat in 12 Tests since the team unleashed attacking ‘Bazball’ revolution last year.
After starting the day with 48 for 1, England lost four wickets and finished at 80 for 5. In a fit of rage, Root ran out a scoreless Harry Brook. But the former skipper shrugged off the mistake and threatened another century after his unbeaten 153 in the first innings. The momentum changed once more as England passed 200 after Stokes top-edged a Wagner delivery to square leg, where Tom Latham made the catch.