After being bowled out for 132 on day one, New Zealand
staged an incredible comeback on day two of the first Test against England at
Lord’s. The visitors dismissed England for just 141 in the morning to concede a
nine-run lead before ending the day on 236 for four as Daryl Mitchell (97* off
188) and Tom Blundell (90* off 182) shared an unbroken 180-run stand to put New
Zealand firmly in the ascendency.
Having reduced England to 116 for seven on day one, the Kiwi
bowlers took care of business in the morning session as they picked up the
final three wickets for just 25 runs. Tim Southee removed both overnight
batters in quick succession, castling Stuart Broad with a full-pitched delivery
before nicking off Ben Foakes to first slip to pick up his fourth wicket of the
innings. England finished with a lead of just nine runs as Trent Boult removed
concussion substitute Matt Parkinson to wrap up the innings on 142.
In reply, New Zealand’s top order suffered another poor
start against the new ball with James Anderson nicking off opener Will Young in
the third over and two more wickets falling before Lunch. The debutant Matty
Potts removed Kane Williamson for the second time in the match before producing
another gem to see the back of Tom Latham, with both batters edging behind
The Kiwis slipped further in the second session when Stuart
Broad strangled Devon Conway down the leg-side, leaving the visitors reeling at
56 for four with a lead of just 45. However, from that point onwards, New
Zealand fought back as Tom Blundell and Daryl Mitchell showed plenty of
patience and discipline to ensure that the rest of the day went wicketless.
The pair absorbed the pressure early on in their innings while
the ball was still moving around before going after the English bowlers as
Mitchell switched through the gears by taking Ben Stokes for a couple of fours.
England’s seam attack lacked the sufficient pace and bounce to trouble the
batters when the pitch flattened out, and the right-handers also received many
pressure-releasing deliveries from the leg-spinner, Matt Parkinson, allowing
them to score some free runs.
Both batters reached their half-century in a span of two
overs after Tea and added 108 runs in the final session to swing the momentum
in the first Test towards the tourists. The pair were briefly troubled by a
spell of short-pitched bowling from Ben Stokes but managed to weather the storm
and end the day within touching distance of a century each, giving the Kiwis a
commanding 225-run lead at stumps.