Cricket Galiyara
News

NZ vs Pak 1st Test – Tom Blundell and Tom Latham dominate as New Zealand lead nears 300 | Cricket

NZ vs Pak 1st Test - Tom Blundell and Tom







Tom Blundell reacts after leaving one © Getty Images


Lunch New Zealand 431 and 98 for 0 (Blundell 59*, Latham 36*) lead Pakistan 239 by 290 runs

Tom Blundell and Tom Latham stretched New Zealand’s lead to 290 during a wicketless first session on day four, leaving New Zealand with the question of when to declare and with what sort of lead. While they will be pleased with their openers’ second-innings displays, they will also be a little concerned over how little help the Bay Oval surface offered the Pakistan bowlers, who looked tidy but far from penetrative.

This pitch has so far played like the typical New Zealand strip over the last six years or so: a green seamer that has flattened out progressively with little sign of deterioration.

Mohammad Abbas looked the most threatening of Pakistan’s bowlers during his new-ball spell, testing the openers’ judgment with tight lines around off stump, and just a hint of seam movement. Slanting the ball across Tom Latham, he produced the only passage of play when ball dominated bat, finding the left-hander’s edge three times in two overs only for the ball to fall short of the slips cordon each time.

There was only one other real moment of concern thereafter, when Faheem Ashraf got one to scoot through at ankle height and sneak under a drive from Blundell, missing off stump by a matter of inches. Uncertain bounce has been the most significant threat to batsmen on this pitch since the early seam movement has faded away, and Kyle Jamieson and Neil Wagner will be especially keen to exploit it.

Otherwise it was smooth sailing for the openers, with Blundell making an impressive comeback into the runs after scores of 14, 14 and 5 in his first three Test innings of the summer. He seemed to get into better positions than during the first innings, with a more pronounced back-and-across trigger helping him break his inertia and get his feet moving.

He took a little time settling, with the lack of pace off the pitch causing him to mistime a few of his drives, but after the drinks break he flowed smoothly, looking especially strong on the pull and the cut, and reached his fifty off 87 balls.

Latham only hit two fours through the session – and one came off the edge – but grew increasingly assured the longer he stayed at the crease. He used the sweep efficiently as always, with Yasir Shah getting little of the sharp turn or bounce that he extracted during the first innings. While that might concern Pakistan on the one hand, it might reassure them on the other, given the amount of time their batsmen will likely have to spend in the middle to get anything out of this contest.

Karthik Krishnaswamy is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo



©
ESPN Sports Media Ltd.


    (function(d, s, id) {
      var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];
      if (d.getElementById(id)) return;
      js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id;
      js.src = "http://connect.facebook.net/en_US/sdk.js?&appId=260890547115&version=v2.1";
      fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);
    }(document, 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));
    window.fbAsyncInit = function() {
        FB.init({
            appId      : '260890547115',
            xfbml      : true,
            status     : true, // check login status
            cookie     : true, // enable cookies to allow the server to access the session
            oauth      : true,
            version    : 'v2.1'
        });
        if(typeof cilogin !== "undefined"){
            cilogin.facebookapiinit();
        }
    };

This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Cricket Galiyara accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability, and data of the text. DigitalGaliyara (OPC) Private Limited management reserves the sole right to alter, delete, or remove (without notice). If you have any concerns with the Content, then please write to us at mail@digitalgaliyara.com

Related posts

Blessing Muzarabani powers Zimbabwe to a Super Over win against Pakistan in third ODI

Digital Galiyara

Ideal Playing XI for Mumbai Indians (MI)

Digital Galiyara

Shai Hope dropped from West Indies Test side for New Zealand tour; Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer return

Digital Galiyara