New ball from Henry and Sears gives New Zealand hope for famous win

Australia’s uncertain top order was once again exposed and it became difficult for them to chase 279 runs.

Australia 256 and 77 for 4 (Head 17, Marsh 27) need 202 more runs to beat New Zealand 162 and 372 (Ravindra 82, Latham 73, Cummins 4-64, Lyon 3-49).

Henry and Sears

Matt Henry and Ben Sears dismantled Australia’s struggling top order at the end of a dramatic third day of play at Hagley Oval, but Mitchell Marsh and Travis Head halted New Zealand’s bid to leave the second Test on a knife’s edge .

Needing 279 runs to win the series 2–0, Australia were in trouble at 34 for 4 with the cheap dismissals of Steven Smith, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne and Cameron Green. But Marsh and Head continued to put on a 43-run stand as Australia reached 77 for 4 at stumps, needing another 202 runs to win.
After taking 15 wickets in three innings in the series, Henry emerged as New Zealand’s main hope and his big catch was behind Khawaja’s appeal on his first ball.

But Henry soon got his first breakthrough when he trapped Smith LBW for 9 runs. Smith took a review at the last second, but the decision was upheld and he completed his modest series of 51 runs at 12.75, as the spotlight intensified on his order change.

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Sears continued his attractive start after entering the attack in the ninth over and with his second ball he edged Labuschagne to first slip, but Daryl Mitchell dropped a low catch to his right. But it did him no good as Labuschagne was unable to control a lifting delivery after two balls as he offered a return catch to Sears.

New Zealand were on the move when Khawaja handed the ball to Tim Southee off Henry, who took a brilliant catch to his left at slip. Australia’s collapse was complete when Green defeated an elated Sears, who celebrated enthusiastically.

Coming to the crease after being out on a duck, Marsh hit a four on the very first ball and bravely counterattacked, regardless of the situation. Australia’s hopes largely rested on Marsh and Head, who were forced to play defensively before the finale.

In a series dominated by the bowlers, batting against the old ball seemed easy and most of the damage was being done by the new ball.

Australia has chased 279 or more only 13 times before, with the most recent being at Edgbaston during last year’s Ashes.

Earlier, he had stopped New Zealand’s progress with the brilliant bowling of Pat Cummins. A 53-run partnership for the seventh wicket between Glenn Phillips and Scott Kuggeleijn put New Zealand in a position to take a lead of over 300 runs. But they fell apart and were out for 372 runs soon after tea, losing 4 wickets for 23 runs.

Cummins took 4 wickets for 62 runs, while Nathan Lyon took a sharp turn after the intermission and destroyed the lower order by taking three wickets.

Wicketkeeper Alex Carey equaled the Australian record by dismissing ten players in the match.

After being bowled out for only 162 runs on the first day, New Zealand battled back to secure just their second Test win against Australia in the last three decades.

New Zealand looked to be in a strong position when Mitchell and Rachin Ravindra added 123 runs for the fourth wicket, the highest partnership of the series for any team.

But the match changed soon after Australia took the second new ball, with Josh Hazlewood dismissing Mitchell for 58, before Ravindra was out for 82 on the first ball of Cummins’s new spell when he edged a brilliant short delivery. -Caught behind the wicket on an off-a-length ball. Distribution.

New Zealand fell further after Tom Blundell was badly dismissed when he completed a fine catch with Labuschagne diving to his left to cover a short-and-wide delivery from Green.

Green covered his mouth after being dismissed, but he was soon disappointed when Labuschagne dropped Kuggeleijn at third slip after diving to his left. Kuggeleijn made them pay by scoring a valuable 44 before the last batsman was out.

Having managed just two wickets in the series before this innings, Cummins got his back down and again showed his ability to make things happen on flat surfaces.

After bowling brilliantly late on the second day, where he took the crucial wicket of Kane Williamson for 51, Cummins took the only wicket of the morning session when he dismissed opener Tom Latham for 73.

If they miss, New Zealand may regret not converting the fifties of their four specialist batsmen into centuries. Playing at 134 for 2, Latham was eyeing his maiden Test century against Australia, surpassing his previous highest score of 63.

But his pursuit of an elusive century against Australia ended when Cummins, bowling from around the wicket, edged him with a ball that rose sharply off the surface. It looked like Latham was going to be taken on the back pad and only a half-hearted appeal was made from behind the wicket.But Cummins wisely decided to review after taking advice from Carey.

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Ravindra and Mitchell took charge with a supreme partnership, forcing Cummins to return Head and Labuschagne either side of lunch as Australia used eight bowlers. Just before the second new ball, Labuschagne opened up his seamers and concentrated on bowling short deliveries at speeds of 130 kilometers per hour. This strategy almost proved to be a masterstroke when Ravindra top-edged it to long-leg.

After that entertaining over, Australia took the second new ball and did their job, but the onslaught continued and a grandstand finish was set up.

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