England complete series whitewash after seven-wicket win over New Zealand at Headingley

Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root safely steered England to a stunning seven-wicket win and a 3-0 series whitewash over New Zealand.

On a rain delayed final day at Headingley, Bairstow bashed an unbeaten 71 off just 44 balls, hitting eight fours and three sixes including the one that secured victory, while Root finished on 86 not out. Ollie Pope was the only wicket to fall, adding just one run to his overnight score before Tim Southee removed his off stump.

England needed just 113 more runs to win the third Test, and set about the task with brutal efficiency once they had returned to the crease after a rain delay forced at early lunch.

Pope's dismissal to the fifth ball of the day was a mere blip on England's progress. They took 17 off the next over from Trent Boult, with both Root and Bairstow hammering a pair of fours each as the score raced on to 203 for three.

Bairstow meant business and, following up two unforgettable attacking centuries, he went on to smash the second fastest Test 50 in English history just a week after claiming the second fastest hundred. He brought up his half-century in 30 balls, two more than Sir Ian Botham's 1981 record, and finished the game with the last of three huge sixes.

Bairstow leathered Southee flat down the ground to reach his half-century, Root having settled into a back-seat role. Bracewell thought he had Bairstow caught off the glove on 55, but was denied a scrap of solace when replays showed the ball ballooning of his forearm.

Root's chances of sneaking to a century disappeared due to his partner's furious scoring, with another four going begging when his attempted scoop shot resulted in four byes down the leg-side.

With 10 runs needed to win and the forlorn Bracewell starting a new over, Bairstow decided to draw a line under proceedings. He leant back and slashed the first ball for four and then slogged a huge six over wide long-on to complete another sensational display for him and England's revitalised red-ball unit.

Root, who scored 396 runs across the three Tests with two centuries, was named as England's player of the series.

The 31-year-old, who relinquished the captaincy prior to the summer season, paid tribute to the heroics of Bairstow in the second and third Tests.

He said: "He's a phenomenal player and it's great to see him showing the rest of the world how good he is. Hopefully he can keep moving forward on that trajectory."

Spinner Jack Leach was named player of the match after taking five wickets in each innings for match figures of 10 for 166.

Leach said at the post-match presentation: "It did look dry, 'Stokesy' came to me and said he thought it was going to spin, so I thought, 'OK, pressure on'.

"But it was good fun. The seamers did a great job, they made it easier for me. 'Pottsy' was unbelievable and probably deserved five wickets as well and Jonny probably deserves this as well for the way he played."

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