Imagine going back in time and trying to tell cynical, world-weary you from a week ago about this match.
“England were 30-4 inside the first hour of day one,” you’d say.
“Yeah, that seems about right,” Earlier You would reply.
“And they then conceded 523 in New Zealand’s first innings,” you’d continue.
“Nothing changes,” says Earlier You.
“And England won.”
At this point, Earlier You would presumably reach the conclusion that Current You was not really Future You (from their perspective). They’d assume you were actually an evil doppelganger, spreading insane lies for who knows what reason.
Only you know what you’d do in that situation.
But this is what actually happened. We may have jumped the gun in lauding the ebb and flow of day one because what do we say now? At no point did we ever really have much an idea how this match was going to end and even now it’s over, we’re still not entirely sure we’ve got it right.
It kind of feels like someone’s got the sums wrong; like one of New Zealand’s innings has accidentally been omitted and they actually won by 250.