Ross Taylor masterclass guides Blackcaps to five-wicket win over England in fourth ODI

An heroic innings from an injured Ross Taylor has lead the Blackcaps to a crucial win over England in the fourth ODI.

Taylor struck an unbeaten 181 off just 147 balls as New Zealand chased down England's first innings total of 335 with three balls to spare, levelling the five-game series at two apiece.

The 33-year-old reinjured his troublesome quadricep shortly after bringing up his century and was forced to hobble through the remainder of his knock.

Barely able to run between the wickets, Taylor instead stood tall and plundered the boundaries to anchor his team's stunning run-chase.

He hit 17 fours and six sixes, appearing near- untouchable as the Kiwis chased down England's 335-9 total with three balls left.

In context, Taylor's efforts are made all the more outstanding.

He came to the crease in the third over after openers Martin Guptill and Colin Munro both fell for ducks, the latter a golden duck.

At 2-2, the Kiwis were in dire straits, but Taylor and Kane Williamson steadied the ship with an 84-run stand before the former came into his own.

Favouring the leg side and scoring more than 80 of his runs at square leg and mid-wicket, Taylor battered English seam and spin, reaching his century and continuing to plug away despite being in clear distress.

By the end of the knock, he could barely run between wickets.

Tom Latham shrugged off some recent poor form to anchor for veteran Taylor, hitting a clinical 71 from 67, while Williamson had earlier struck 45.

But the day belonged to Taylor, as he and Henry Nicholls successfully struck the three runs they needed from the final over to triumph.

Nicholls won the match with a six over square leg.

Yet England can only blame themselves for not streaking off into the distance before Taylor even walked out to the middle.

Batting first, they had roared out to 267-1 with 13 overs to spare - and Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root notching impressive centuries - when their middle order collapsed, giving up six wickets for 21 runs.

Bairstow walloped 138, while Root played his way to 102.

For the Kiwis, Ish Sodhi was a standout and bowled 58-4 in his 10 overs, while Munro and Trent Boult each collected a pair of scalps.

"A lot of credit has to go to the way the guys bowled in the back third of that game, to restrict them to 335," Williamson said.

"Ross, after a tough start, he got himself in and played his best one-day knock, one of the great one-day knocks we've seen in a chasing effort.

"An outstanding performance from him and a great partnership with Tom."

The decisive fifth ODI takes place in Christchurch on Saturday.