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England finish day three on a high note, thanks to centuries from Joe Root and Ollie Pope

After two days of batter’s dominance at Trent Bridge, the second Test between England and New Zealand has shifted in favour of the visitors. The hosts, on the other hand, made a strong statement with the bat on the third day, ensuring that a loss from here on out is nearly impossible in the current scenario.

Earlier, England resumed day three at 90 for 1, trailing by 463 runs, with Ollie Pope (51*) and Alex Lees (34*) at the crease. Pope and Lees went on to add 50 more runs at the start of day three, when the partnership appeared to be hurting the Kiwis. Lees quickly reached his half-century, but he died after a well-made 67 to become the day’s first victim.

In came the in-form batter Joe Root, who joined hands with Pope, who was on his way to a century. Root was the aggressor of the two as they added 187 for the third wicket. In the process, Pope reached a magnificent century, while Root continued to push the boundaries on the other end. Root quickly reached his half-century with a flurry of boundaries and went on to score another century.

Finally, Trent Boult came to the visitors’ aid, dismissing Pope for 145 off 239 deliveries. Pope’s magnificent knock, which included 13 fours and three sixes, put the hosts in command. Jonny Bairstow’s stay in the crease was brief, as Boult removed him after only eight runs as the scoreboard read 344 for 4. Root was joined by skipper Ben Stokes, and the pair stitched a quickfire partnership to get things back on track.

Stokes hit a 33-ball 46 with six fours and two sixes, while Root was content to take singles from the other end. Michael Bracewell, on the other hand, managed to get Stokes out. Wicketkeeper-batsman Ben Foakes kept the ship afloat with a 70-ball 24, while Root (163*) passed the 150-run mark near the end of the day. At 473 for 5, England was trailing by 80 runs at stumps, with five wickets in hand.