February 26, 2023.
Table of Contents
Basin Reserve, Wellington.
Tom Latham & Devon Conway’s Fighting Century Partnership led New Zealand’s fightback after they were asked to follow on by England at the Basin Reserve.
New Zealand put their best opening batting performance in the series. After England asked them to follow on after the home side bundled out on 209 in the first Innings. With still trailing by 226 runs, kiwi openers lead the fight back with 149 run opening stand. Before Jack leach broke the partnership just after tea, England then got rid of Tom Latham and Will Yooung in quick succession. But Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls made it to the stumps without any loss after surviving some close calls late in the day.
New Zealand’s lower batting order showed some defiance at the start of Day three. Captain Tim Southee scored the counter-attacking innings of 73 runs off 49 deliveries, but his lone efforts were not enough to avoid the follow-on. The home side was asked to bat again with still trailing by 226 runs.
New Zealand got the much-needed motivation after the impressive performance of the lower batting order. Kiwi Openers duo of Latham and Conway keep English bowlers at bay, who were looking for an early breakthrough. They batted the entire afternoon session & safely Negotiated the tough period.
With the sun coming out the after the overcast morning session, conditions became easy for the batting. The pitch showed signs of settling down Conway and Latham show impressive batting skills; both completed their half-centuries. After the initial struggle at the start of the innings, both took the traditional test match batting approach and relied on strike rotating with odd boundaries now and then.
As the ball became older, there was a hint of turn for the English spinner. Jack leach got the crucial breakthrough just after tea, he removed Conway, and Ollie Pope took a sharp catch at the short leg. Soon after, Joe Root got Tom Latham LBW while playing a sweep shot. Tom Latham made a fighting 83 off 172. Will Young soon fall to Jack Leach while defending the ball with an open stance? He played inside the line of the ball & lost his off-stump. England pulls things back in the third session with three quick wickets for just 18 runs.
But the experienced duo of Kane Williamson (25) and Henry Nicholls (18) held firm toward the end of the day. They made it to the stumps without any further damage.
Fascinating last Two days awaiting
It will be a very exciting final two days of the test match coming up from the Basin Reserve, Wellington. New Zealand will fancy their chances to gain some valuable lead and put the English side under pressure. They are still trailing by 24 runs with 7 wickets in hand. Tomorrow they will look to erase the deficit & will try to bat as long as possible and give England a steep target to chase on the final day.
On the other side, England will definitely try to warp up New Zealand’s lower batting cheaply on day four and warp the famous series win. England has not managed to win the test series in New Zealand since 2007/08.
New Zealand is 1-0 down in the two-match test series after losing the first test at Bay oval by 267 runs. They have a good chance to level the series in the second test at the basin reserve.
New Zealand hasn’t lost a test series at home since their 1-0 loss against South Africa in 2016-17. They will be looking forward to extending their unbeaten streak at home.
Score Card: New Zealand 209 (Southee 73, Broad 4-61) & 202 for 3 (Williamson 25*, Nicholls 18*) trail England 435 for 8 dec by 24 runs