New Zealand vs India: Williamson dominates but India fights back

Catch all the updates, commentary, score and analysis from the first Test match between India and New Zealand at Basin Reserve, Wellington.

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Kane Williamson led New Zealand's charge with the bat.   -  AP

STUMPS DAY 2| India has clawed its way back into this contest thanks to Ishant Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin who chipped away at the New Zealand top and middle-order to reduce them  to 216/5. The host still has the upper hand and leads by 51 runs. Kane Williamson once again leading from the front with a fine 89.

 

NZ 185/4 after 63 Overs: WICKET! Kane Williamson has holed out, 11 short of his hundred. Substitute Ravi Jadeja completing a fine catch off Shami's bowling. BJ Watling joins Nicholls.

NZ 179/3 after 59 Overs: The wicket of Taylor has put the break on the scoring rate. Only 13 coming off the last six overs. Nicholls is taking his time while Williamson is steadily heading toward his hundred. If India can dismiss Williamson before stumps, the visitor will feel it has shared the honours.

NZ 166/3 after 53 Overs: WICKET! And it's that man Ishant again: good length ball hits Taylor's glove, and lobs into the air for Short leg to complete a simple catch. Taylor departs for 44. The 93-run stand between Taylor and KW has been broken.

NZ 131/2 after 43 Overs: Williamson clipped an Ashwin delivery over mid-wicket to bring up his half-century. Next over, Williamson drives Shami in the gap wide of cover for four more before collecting yet another boundary off Ashwin with a crisp cut shot. Runs coming thick and fast now for New Zealand. The partnership between Taylor and KW is now 50 plus.

Ravichandran Ashwin begins proceedings after tea.

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India picked two wickets in that session but New Zealand still in front, especially with Williamson set and Taylor too looking good for a big one. None of the Indian bowlers, save Ishant, have looked threatening. They need wickets and fast! 99 runs coming in the second session.

NZ 107/2 after 38 Overs: Bumrah goes short and wide, Williamson rocks back and punches with an open face for four. He's approaching his fifty.

NZ 96/2 after 33 Overs: Slip, backward and forward short leg for Ross Taylor. Ashwin goes full, outside off, and Taylor goes on one knee before slogging it over deep mid-wicket for six. Ashwin's getting the ball to turn here... couple of close calls for lbw going against India. Despite that last wicket, New Zealand will feel they've the proceedings under control, with two of their most experienced campaigners - Williamson and Taylor in the middle. Bumrah meanwhile has been brought back. He has bowled eight overs so far without any success; very unlike him.

NZ 78/2 after 28 Overs: Ishant Sharma has ended Blundell's resistance! He has been rewarded for pitching the ball up: full, just outside off, and Blundell pushes forward to defend, but the ball goes through him, and crashes into the stumps. That brings Ross Taylor, playing his 100th Test, to the crease. A timely wicket for India, that should lift their spirits.

NZ 63/1 after 23 Overs: Bumrah bowls short of a length outside off and Williamson rocks back to drive it off the back foot for four. Two balls later, Bumrah goes too full and Williamson just drives it past Ashwin for another boundary. Ravichandran Ashwin, right-arm off break, comes into the attack in the 22nd over. Slip and short-leg in place for him. He goes for 5.

NZ 37/1 after 18 Overs: Indian seamers sticking to short of a length at the moment. Neither Williamson nor Blundell seem to mind that. Shami has changed ends after his four-over spell. Sharma (4-2-8-1) has been replaced by Bumrah.Williamson, in the meantime, has cut a short-ish delivery past point for four.

NZ 27/1 after 13 Overs: Sharma gets the breakthrough. He strays down the leg side, angling away, Latham  gloves it back to the keeper. Unfortunate fashion to get out but India will take it. Earlier, Sharma dished out a half-volley and with no swing, those are easy pickings. Blundell drives it wide of mid-off for four. Mohammed Shami from the other end. Two slips and a gully for him. Mohammed Shami drops one short, and Blundell pulls it square midwicket for his third boundary of the innings. Meanwhile, Kane Williamson is greeted with a bouncer that hits his thumb.

Ishant Sharma to start proceedings after lunch. Tom Blundell to take strike.

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Latham and Blundell have safely negotiated the eight overs before the break, India using Ishant, Bumrah and Shami in that period. New Zealand 17/0 at lunch.

NZ 8/0 after 5 Overs: Three slips, gully and short-leg for Bumrah, who concedes three runs off the first over. Ishant Sharma, fresh after recovering from an ankle injury, starts off with a maiden. Chris Gayle is in the house. Simon Doull on air informs that the Jamaican is in the country on some promotional work. Much better from Bumrah in the second over: bowls full to Blundell, enticing him to drive but he is happy to defend.

Jasprit Bumrah with the new ball. Tom Latham and Tom Blundell opening for the Kiwis. The light roller was used in between change of innings.

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Shami and Ishant rode their luck, but only so far. The two added 22 valuable runs to India's total but New Zealand, who picked 5 for 43 in the first hour, are on top. India have been bowled out for 165.  Kyle Jamieson: 4 for 39, Tim Southee: 4 for 49

IND 157/8 in 65 Overs: Southee has been terrific in the morning session, building the pressure with accuracy, swing and seam movement. He had Rahane caught behind for 46. Shortly, Ishant Sharma was given out caught behind but the batsman reviewed immediately and the replays confirmed there was no contact between bat and ball: nothing on HotSpot. UltraEdge showed a flat line as well. Southee nearly had his fourth but Williamson dropped a skier. Shami celebrated the reprieve with a well-executed on-drive for four. India have gone past 150.

IND 139/7 in 60 Overs: India committing harakiri early in the morning: a breakdown in communication sees Pant sacrifice his wicket for Rahane, whose call it was. Pant is run out for 19. Southee then cleans up Ravi Ashwin off the next delivery. Absolute gem from Southee to remove Ashwin, a full delivery angling into Ashwin from middle and off, swinging away late and crashing into the stumps. Southee has undone whatever hard yards India put in with the bat following the top-order meltdown.

Ajaz Patel to start proceedings on a bright and sunny day two in Wellington. Pant to take strike.

Play will start at the same time today - with 98 overs to be bowled. The extra half hour will not be added at the start of the day.

What's day two got in store for us? Yesterday, it was debutant Kyle Jamieson who ran through the Indian top-order with seam movement and some disconcerting bounce on a slow surface. But Ajinkya Rahane and Rishabh Pant have stemmed the rot with a partnership. It will be a crucial day's play for Pant, who has been picked over the more experienced Saha. Meanwhile, the onus of anchoring the lower-middle order will be on Rahane. How much longer can these two resist the Kiwi challenge? We will find out soon enough...

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There was laughter all around when Kane Williamson chased his cap, blown away by the blustery wind, around the park.

But then, for the most part, the Kiwi skipper, with attacking field placements and smart bowling changes, had his finger on the pulse of the game on Day one of the first Test against India at the Basin Reserve on Friday.

Before rain intervened after Tea to end opening day’s play before a goodly crowd, New Zealand had pushed India, 122 for five, on to the backfoot. The host had won the toss and opted to bowl. Here's S Dinakar describing the first day's play.

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TOSS UPDATE: New Zealand has won the toss and decided to bowl first. Meanwhile, it has started to drizzle in Wellington.

New Zealand (Playing XI): Tom Latham, Tom Blundell, Kane Williamson(c), Ross Taylor, Henry Nicholls, BJ Watling(w), Colin de Grandhomme, Kyle Jamieson, Tim Southee, Ajaz Patel, Trent Boult

India (Playing XI): Prithvi Shaw, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli(c), Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant(w), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah

Taylor on his 100th cap: "Had a great cap presentation. Good friend and mentor Ian Smith said a few words. Will need some help drinking the 100 wines I received for each Test. Keeps the tradition from Fleming, Vettori and Brendon going (where they received the wines too)."

There is grass on this Basin Reserve surface and the New Zealand pacemen will be relentless in their quest for scalps. A windy morning with overcast conditions in New Zealand at the moment. What do you make of the pitch?

 

STAT ALERT: Virat Kohli is 11 runs short of overtaking former skipper Sourav Ganguly to become the fifth highest run scorer for India in the longest format.

Kyle Jamieson is likely to make his Test debut, bowling alongside Trent Boult and Tim Southee after left-arm seamer Neil Wagner withdrew from the team on Wednesday.

The Indian skipper is gung-ho about his pace pack where Ishant Sharma appears to have put fitness troubles behind. The Indian captain said, “He looked pretty similar to how he was bowling before the ankle injury and was hitting good areas. Really good to see him bowling with pace. He has the experience too.”

 

Form guide

(last five completed matches)

India WWWWW

New Zealand LLLDW

There is a covering of grass on the pitch for the forthcoming first Test and the two teams should be close to being bowled out in their first innings by day two.

It’s in the second innings as the surface eases out that the real game begins. There is less deviation off the track for the seamers, the pitch becomes slower and runs flow off the blade. 

Then it boils down to strategy and the execution of plans. The strong wind, who bowls with and against it, could be critical to the outcome. 

This said, the surface for the India-New Zealand game, a part of the World Test Championship, could be different in character. Full preview here| Ind vs NZ

The teams:

India (from): Virat Kohli (captain), Mayank Agarwal, Prithivi Shaw, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wk), R. Ashwin, Mohhamed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Umesh Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Navdeep Saini, Shubhman Gill. 

New Zealand (from): Kane Williamson (captain), Tom Latham, Tony Blundell, Henry Nicholls, Ross Taylor, Colin de Grandhomme,  B.J. Watling (keeper), Tim Southee, Ajaz Patel, Tim Southee, Kyle Jamieson, Daryl Mitchell. 

Umpires: Richard Kettleborough, Aleem Dar, TV Umpire: Michael Gough; Match Referee: Ranjan Madugalle. 

The match begins at 4.00 am IST. It will be telecast live on Star Sports.

 

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's live coverage of the first Test between India and New Zealand at the Basin Reserve in Wellington.