New Zealand vs India 1st Test Day 4 preview: Hosts should go 1-0 up by tea

New Zealand vs India 1st Test Day 4 preview: Hosts should go 1-0 up by tea

Trent Boult New Zealand India

India finished Day 3 of the first Test, at Basin Reserve, Wellington, on 144/4. They need another 39 to make New Zealand bat again. At the crease are Ajinkya Rahane (25*) and Hanuma Vihari (15*), and unless there is a miraculous rearguard act, New Zealand take an unassailable 1-0 lead in the series on Day 4.

Trent Boult (3/27) started the rout with a short-pitched ball aimed at the ribs of Prithvi Shaw (14), who ended up playing it to the hands of square leg. Mayank Agarwal (58) and Cheteshwar Pujara (11) then added 51 for the second wicket, helping India stay afloat.

However, Pujara fell at the stroke of tea, shouldering arms to a ball from Boult that pitched outside off and swerved back to hit off stump. At the other end Tim Southee (1/41) took out Agarwal, who edged one while trying to flick. India’s woes extended further when Virat Kohli (19) edged one while trying to hook.

Earlier, New Zealand resumed the day on 216/5 and were quickly reduced to 225/7: Jasprit Bumrah (1/88) got BJ Watling (14) with a bouncer, while Ishant Sharma (5/68) had Southee (6) caught at fine leg.

However, Colin de Grandhomme (43) and debutant Kyle Jamieson (44) then dug deep, adding 71 for the eighth wicket. Boult, coming out at 310/9, made merry for a 24-ball 38 as New Zealand were finally bowled out for 348. R Ashwin picked up 3/99.

Key players

Trent Boult (New Zealand): Boult has already taken out three wickets (including both Pujara and Kohli), and will look to polish things off as soon as possible. He has moved the ball around from both over and round the stumps, and is likely to become a menace on the fourth morning.

Ajinkya Rahane (India): Rahane had top-scored for India in the first innings. He has looked composed, if a tad slow, in the second, and has to make it big if India are to make a fight out of what seems a certain defeat.

Brief scores

India 165 (Ajinkya Rahane 46; Kyle Jamieson 4/39, Tim Southee 4/49) and 144/4 (Mayank Agarwal 58; Trent Boult 3/27) trail New Zealand 348 (Kane Williamson 89; Ishant Sharma 5/68, R Ashwin 3/99) by 39 runs.


New Zealand to win by tea.