England’s travel sickness continues as New Zealand complete rout

Tourists have now lost 10 of their last 12 Tests away from home after Auckland hammering

Todd Astle celebrates the wicket of James Anderson’s, completing New Zealand’s first test win over England. Photograph: David Gray/Reuters

Todd Astle celebrates the wicket of James Anderson’s, completing New Zealand’s first test win over England. Photograph: David Gray/Reuters

 

England 58 and 320; New Zealand 427-8 dec - New Zealand win by an innings and 49 runs

England’s abominable overseas record continues to deteriorate. They have now lost 10 of their last 12 matches away from home. Despite a resolute innings of 66 in four and a half hours from Ben Stokes in his first Test of the winter,New Zealand finally claimed the victory that had seemed such a formality in those dim and distant days when the headline news in Australia was about a threatened strike among Customs and Border Protection staff at airports this Easter.

New Zealand won by an innings and 49 runs. They were made to toil, unlike in England’s calamitous first innings, but they were more than prepared to do so in the first floodlit Test on Kiwi soil. There was no forlorn pursuit of reverse swing here, but with Trent Boult and Neil Wagner busting a gut they eventually found a way through England’s lineup. The pitch was true, the batsmen far more resilient than on Thursday and they only had just over an hour to spare. But – deservedly – they got there in the end.

Boult purred to the wicket tirelessly throughout the game and was the obvious recipient of the man of the match award. He bowls in the classic manner; Wagner, an irrepressible competitor much beloved in Chelmsford as well as Christchurch, has a different, almost unique method. Mostly he bowls bouncers but they are extremely well-directed ones. He charges in with hostile intent for over after over. He even races back to his mark with unrelenting purpose. Wagner took just three wickets in the match but one of them critically – with his last ball before dinner – was that of Stokes.

Having batted with great restraint Stokes tried to uppercut another bouncer from the impudent Wagner. The mis-hit ballooned over the gully region where Tim Southee, running back, grabbed the catch. New Zealand’s greatest obstacle had been removed. Now just three wickets were needed in the final session. Within an hour Todd Astle defeated Craig Overton with a googly and another perfectly directed bouncer saw Chris Woakes, who had battled to his fourth Test half century, fending the ball to short-leg. Jimmy Anderson lamely drove to mid-off against the leg-spinner and the celebrations could begin.

Stokes and Woakes were the only two batsmen to give Kane Williamson the odd headache. Despite suffering from back pain later in his innings Stokes displayed much resolve and technical skill. He glided his first ball from Boult to the fine leg boundary but thereafter his innings was a model of self-denial for the best part of two sessions. He was easily the most secure of the remaining English batsmen, firm and confident in defence.

Until his demise he felt no urgency to keep his score ticking over; at one point he faced 31 balls without scoring (a record for him in Test cricket according to the BBC scorer Andrew Samson, of course) and he was not bothered.

The rest were less convincing. In these situations there is always the need to be positive in defence with decisive movement of the feet. Dawid Malan could not deliver that. For the second time in the match he was stuck on the crease, prodding tentatively and edging, this time against Southee.

Malan was excellent in Australia but there is the suspicion that his technique is more suited to the hard unyielding pitches there, which offer minimal sideways movement. On such surfaces a significant stride towards the ball may not be so essential.

Jonny Bairstow, one of the five batsmen on a pair, took 15 balls to avoid that indignity and was dropped before he scored. He flicked at a leg-side delivery from Southee and edged behind; BJ Watling dived to his left and the ball clipped his gloves but proceeded down to the fine-leg boundary. It was a tough chance but one that international keepers might expect to take more often than not.

Bairstow’s next alarm came when the leg-spinner Astle was finally introduced. He spied an ugly long-hop, which was surely destined for the leg side boundary. However Bairstow, on 21, mis-hit the ball horribly straight to a startled Boult at mid-on, who dropped a straightforward catch. This seemed a significant miss but Bairstow could not capitalise. In Astle’s next over there was another long-hop, which spun towards the off-side. This time the batsman made better contact and the ball sped towards Williamson at mid-wicket, who snatched an excellent catch.

The sun sets on Eden Park during the final day of the first Test between England and New Zealand. Photograph: Hannah Peters/Getty

Currently the advent of Moeen Ali is not a source of great assurance. But he settled in without too many alarms. Wagner bounced him (of course) and there were one or two wafts but also some crisp pull shots. Soon he had overtaken Stokes but the combination of the new ball, Boult and a shrewd review brought about his wicket.

It was clear that the ball had found the edge of his bat, which dampened the enthusiasm for a review. But those fielders square of the wicket sensed it had touched Moeen’s right pad before touching his bat. The replays confirmed that this was the case. This constituted a minor triumph for Williamson since this was just his fourth successful review as captain in 34 attempts, the worst record of all the Test captains (Samson), not a statistic that disturbed New Zealand’s captain greatly after a famous victory.

(Guardian service)

Scorecard

England second innings
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s
A N Cook c Watling b Boult 2 11 0 0
M D Stoneman c Boult b Wagner 55 91 6 1
J E Root c Watling b Boult 51 131 5 0
D J Malan c Latham b Southee 23 62 3 0
B A Stokes c Southee b Wagner 66 188 6 0
J M Bairstow c Williamson b Astle 26 72 4 0
M M Ali lbw b Boult 28 43 6 0
C R Woakes c Nicholls b Wagner 52 118 8 0
C Overton lbw b Astle 3 18 0 0
S C J Broad 1 19 0 0
J M Anderson c Boult b Astle 1 5 0 0
Extras 8b 2lb 0 1w 1nb 12
Total for 10 320 126.1 overs

Bowler O M R W
T A Boult 27 9 67 3
T G Southee 26 4 86 1
C de Grandhomme 24 10 40 0
N Wagner 32 11 77 3
T D Astle 16 5 39 3
K S Williamson 1 0 1 0

Fall of wickets
Order Name Runs
1 A N Cook 6
2 M D Stoneman 94
3 J E Root 132
4 D J Malan 142
5 J M Bairstow 181
6 M M Ali 217
7 B A Stokes 300
8 C Overton 304
9 C R Woakes 319
10 J M Anderson 320

New Zealand first innings
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s
J A Raval c Bairstow b Anderson 3 23 0 0
T W M Latham c Woakes b Broad 26 112 3 0
K S Williamson lbw b Anderson 102 220 11 1
L R P L Taylor c Woakes b Anderson 20 35 3 0
H M Nicholls 145 268 18 0
B J Watling c Bairstow b Broad 31 65 5 0
C de Grandhomme c Bairstow b Overton 29 39 5 1
T D Astle b Broad 18 35 3 0
T G Southee c & b Root 25 42 2 0
N Wagner 9 7 0 1
Extras 4b 9lb 0 6w 19
Total for 8 427 141.0 overs

Bowler O M R W
J M Anderson 29 10 87 3
S C J Broad 34 9 78 3
C Overton 25 7 70 1
C R Woakes 33 9 107 0
M M Ali 17 1 59 0
J E Root 3 0 13 1

Fall of wickets
Order Name Runs
1 J A Raval 8
2 T W M Latham 92
3 L R P L Taylor 123
4 K S Williamson 206
5 B J Watling 260
6 C de Grandhomme 309
7 T D Astle 341
8 T G Southee 413

England first innings
Batsman Runs Balls 4s 6s
A N Cook c Latham b Boult 5 21 0 0
M D Stoneman c Watling b Southee 11 20 2 0
J E Root b Boult 0 6 0 0
D J Malan c Watling b Boult 2 6 0 0
B A Stokes b Boult 0 8 0 0
J M Bairstow c & b Southee 0 4 0 0
M M Ali b Southee 0 8 0 0
C R Woakes b Boult 5 9 0 0
C Overton 33 25 5 1
S C J Broad c Williamson b Southee 0 6 0 0
J M Anderson c Nicholls b Boult 1 11 0 0
Extras 1lb 0 1
Total for 10 58 20.4 overs

Bowler O M R W
T A Boult 10 3 32 6
T G Southee 10 3 25 4

Fall of wickets
Order Name Runs
1 A N Cook 6
2 J E Root 6
3 D J Malan 16
4 M D Stoneman 18
5 B A Stokes 18
6 J M Bairstow 18
7 C R Woakes 23
8 M M Ali 23
9 S C J Broad 27
10 J M Anderson 58

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