Ross Taylor's staggering innings against England yesterday wasn't even finished before it was being rated on social media as one of the great knocks by a Black Cap.

Taylor struggled with a hip injury, a quad injury and cramp in the arm to complete a memorable 181 not out in leading the Black Caps to a five wicket win.

Thanks to Taylor, and some help from Ish Sodhi, Tom Latham, Kane Williamson and Colin de Grandhomme, the Black Caps can now take a series victory with a win in the final game in Christchurch.

It was one of the great individual performances for the Black Caps but is it the best innings ever.

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I came up with a formula, a very basic one to be fair, to attempt to work out which knock should have the title as 'best ever'.

Here's the categories:

Winning knock/match situation (out of 5)
Coming in with team in trouble in a chase is more impressive than opening an innings batting first.

Runs Scored (out of 5)
Pretty simple. More runs, higher mark.

Occasion (out of 5)
The World Cup is the biggest stage while a must-win or series decider is mid-range.

Opposition (out of 5)
To stop those flat track bullies.

For example:
Lou Vincent's 172 v Zimbabwe, Bulawayo, 2005
Match situation - 1
Opened the innings in the first match of a series.
Runs scored - 4.5
At the time was New Zealand's highest ODI score.
Occasion - 1
It was a series against Zimbabwe.
Opposition - 1
It was a game against Zimbabwe.
Total score: 7.5/20
Honourable mentions:
Chris Cairns 102 not out v India, 2000, Nairobi
Ross Taylor 131 not out v Pakistan, 2011, Pallekele
Scott Styris 101 v Australia, 2005, Christchurch
Kane Williamson 145 v South Africa, 2013, Kimberley
Luke Ronchi 170 not out v Sri Lanka, 2015, Dunedin

Here's what the formula, and my arbitrary marking, judged as the best individual innings by a Black Caps batsman.

Corey Anderson 131* v West Indies, Queenstown, 2014

Match situation - 2.5

It rates as an ODI innings but it was really a 21-21 international. With New Zealand batting first Anderson entered the crease with the side at 84-3 after seven overs. He was there at the end of the innings with New Zealand on a staggering 283 for four putting on 191 with Jesse Ryder. The partnership won the game.

Occasion - 2

Game three of a five match series against the West Indies. New Zealand lost the opener and the second match was rained off in Napier so it got the side back into the series which eventually ended 2-2.

Runs scored - 4.5

The runs may not be as high as others on this list but the fact he did it in so few balls is staggering.

Opposition - 2

A West Indies side on New Zealand soil and having to bowl shorter spells because of the reduced overs.

Total score: 11/20

Martin Guptill 189* v England, Southampton, 2013

Match situation - 2

Opened the innings with New Zealand batting first.

Runs scored - 4.5

Passed Lou Vincent to make New Zealand's highest ODI total

Occasion - 2.5

Away from home. Second ODI in a three-match series. New Zealand won the first game so not a must-win but it secured the series win.

Opposition - 4

England were the number two ranked team in the world and playing at home.

Total score: 13/20

Craig McMillan 117 v Australia, Hamilton, 2007

Match situation - 5

McMillan came to the wicket with New Zealand flailing at 41 for four in the 10th over chasing 347 to win. Pretty much no chance of winning a game from there.

Runs scored - 3.5

117 off 96 balls – 11 years ago that was pretty special.

Occasion - 2.5

New Zealand had already claimed the series after winning the opening two games. Still, securing a 3-0 sweep was pretty special.

Opposition - 3.5

It's Australia but drops a full mark because it was a weakened Aussie side. Bracken, Tait and a young Mitchell Johnson…not exactly McGrath, Warne and Lee.

Total score: 14.5/20

Craig McMillan turned the 2007 ODI against Australia with a match-winning knock. Photosport
Craig McMillan turned the 2007 ODI against Australia with a match-winning knock. Photosport

Martin Crowe 100* v Australia, Eden Park, 1992

Match situation - 3

NZ batting first but Crowe entered with his side 13-2. Batted the rest of the Black Caps' innings.

Runs scored - 3

Crazy to think Guptill scored 137 more than Crowe but a century and still a century.

Occasion - 4

Cricket World Cup opening game. Plenty of pressure.

Opposition - 5

Old foes Australia who were defending World Cup champions.

Total score: 15/20

Martin Crowe on his way to a hundred in the 1992 World Cup opener. Photo / NZ Herald
Martin Crowe on his way to a hundred in the 1992 World Cup opener. Photo / NZ Herald

Martin Guptill 180* v South Africa, Hamilton, 2017

Match situation - 3

NZ chasing 280 at Seddon Park is not the most daunting prospect. Guptill didn't exactly win it single-handedly, Taylor made 66, but he did score 64 percent of New Zealand's runs.

Occasion - 3

Like Taylor's innings it was must-win 4th ODI in a five-match series.

Runs scored - 4.5

Still only his third highest ODI score.

Opposition - 4.5

Total score: 15/20

Martin Guptill reached 180 for the third time last year. Photo / Alan Gibson
Martin Guptill reached 180 for the third time last year. Photo / Alan Gibson

Martin Guptill 237* v West Indies, Wellington, 2015

Match situation - 3

Opened the innings with New Zealand batting first. The game was over once his innings was.

Runs scored - 5

The only New Zealander to score a double ton, so worthy of the only 5 mark.

Occasion - 4.5

A World Cup quarter-final on home turf. That's a pretty big occasion.

Opposition - 3

New Zealand will favourites to win and the West Indies bowling outfit conceded 307 to Ireland and 408 to South Africa earlier in the tournament.

Total score: 15.5/20

Martin Guptill celebrates becoming the first NZer to make a double ton in ODIs. Photo / Mark Mitchell
Martin Guptill celebrates becoming the first NZer to make a double ton in ODIs. Photo / Mark Mitchell

Grant Elliott 84* v South Africa, Eden Park, 2015

Match situation - 4.5

New Zealand were chasing 298 from 43 overs, when Elliott came to the crease the Black Caps needed 170 from 26 overs with seven wickets in hand. Not the biggest ask on a small ground. But someone needed to step up if the Black Caps were to reach a World Cup final and he took control of the match, staying there to hit the winning runs.

Runs scored - 2

Hurt himself by sharing the scoring with Corey Anderson.

Occasion - 5

The top mark should really be for a World Cup final but this was to get New Zealand finally into that position after so many semifinal defeats.

Opposition - 4.5

South Africa were one of the favourites going into the World Cup and have a very good record against New Zealand. Playing on home soil takes away a half point.

Total score: 16/20

Grant Elliott celebrates after securing New Zealand's spot in the World Cup final. Photo / Brett Phibbs
Grant Elliott celebrates after securing New Zealand's spot in the World Cup final. Photo / Brett Phibbs

Ross Taylor 181* v England, Dunedin, 2018

Match situation - 5

Entered with New Zealand 2-2 and chasing 336. Match-winning innings.

Runs scored - 4.5

Fourth highest ever in a chase.

Occasion - 3

Must win game in a five-match series. Not exactly a World Cup final.

Opposition - 4

England are the third ranked side in the world.

Total score: 16.5/20

Stephen Fleming 134* v South Africa, Johannesburg, 2003

Match situation - 5

New Zealand were chasing and it was raining so runs were needed fast.

Runs scored - 3.5

At the time it was New Zealand's fourth highest ODI score.

Occasion - 4.5

A must-win game at a World Cup. Stakes are pretty high. Extra half-point for being an away game. New Zealand's first one-day win in nine attempts away against South Africa

Opposition - 5

Bowling attack included Allan Donald, Shaun Pollock and Makhaya Ntini.

Total score: 18/20

Stephen Fleming acknowledges the crowd after scoring his 100 against South Africa. Photosport
Stephen Fleming acknowledges the crowd after scoring his 100 against South Africa. Photosport