Eng v NZ 2nd test: Honours even on day 1
It was an excellent day of test match cricket by both New Zealand and England on the first day of the 2nd test at Edgbaston as the full capacity crowd returned for the first time in the stadium since covid restrictions were put more than a year ago. Fine half-centuries from Burns and Lawrence were countered by a sustained spell of seam and swing bowling by the full New Zealand pace attack.
Eng v NZ 2nd test: Honours even on day 1. England won the toss and batted. Their only change was a forced one. Ollie Robinson after the tweetergate scandal was replace by Ollie Stone. However with the WTC final following soon as well as some injury issues, New Zealand made 6 changes in their XI. Resting Southee, Jamieson, Grandhomme and replacing injury-hit Williamson, Watling, Santner. Tom Latham led the team in Williamson’s absence.
England openers were resilient unseperate till lunch & put on 72 for 1st wicket. Till Matt Henry and Wagner fought back with 3 quick wickets. Henry bowling good line and outswingers sent back Sibley (35) as he edged an away going delivery to the keeper. Soon Wagner had Crawley(0) caught in slips and little later another outgoing delivery from Henry had Root (4) caught behind.
Ollie Pope(19) and in form Rory Burns battled hard to take England to 127/3. When Pope played a poor cut shot to left-arm spin of Ajaz Patel. This was follow by another steady 42 run stand between Burns and Lawrence. Burns was in great touch no matter how in-elegant he looks, and was particularly hitting his cover drives with precision with great body balance. However, Trent Boult struck back with vengeance, getting both Burns (81) and Bracey (0) caught in the slips as both chased outswingers.
However, it was from this point that Dan Lawrence took over. Mixing caution with aggression and playing some top class shots. Still batting on 67, he had great support from Ollie Stone(20) and later Mark Wood (16 not out) as England scrapped hard against an impressive New Zealand bowling attack to reach 258/7 at close and a great 2nd day in prospect.
The Kiwi bowlers bowled well as a bunch. They moved the ball well and bowled good lines. Never allowing the England batsmen to get away till a late surge by Lawrence in the last hour.
Burns 81, Lawrence 67*
Boult 2/60, Ajaz 2/34