England has produced a compelling Test match.
On Saturday morning, with New Zealand 226 behind and almost three days of the second Test in Wellington remaining, the follow-on was enforced. It was surely not the plan for the Black Caps to then rack up 483 and set England 258 to win.
In England’s view the follow-on was the “positive option”. It is also the option that has left them in danger of a historic defeat, but left the rest of us with the prospect of a thrilling conclusion.
Whether or not enforcing the follow-on is the most positive option is up for debate.
It is certainly the swiftest route to victory, though it can also be argued a more positive method is to nail the game down by batting again.