Lord's Test poised for thrilling finish

PTI | ByJulian Guyer (AFP), London
May 24, 2004 03:10 PM IST

England will go into Monday's final day needing a further 274 runs in a minimum of 90 overs.

England will go into Monday's final day needing a further 274 runs in a minimum of 90 overs to reach their victory target of 282 in the first Test against New Zealand at Lord's.

HT Image
HT Image

England, at stumps on Sunday, were eight for without loss, with stand-in captain Marcus Trescothick one not out and first innings debut centurion Andrew Strauss six not out.

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Earlier England bowled out New Zealand for 336 in their second innings with opener Mark Richardson making 101 to go along with his first innings 93.

Wicket-keeper Brendon McCullum made a Test best 96 while England fast bowler Stephen Harmison finished with four for 76.

Trescothick, deputising for the injured Michael Vaughan, unusually, did not take the new ball at all during New Zealand's innings although it was available after 80 overs when the tourists were 231 for five.

After tea New Zealand resumed on 269 for five with Richardson 101 not out and Nathan Astle unbeaten on 29, a lead of 214.

But obdurate left-hander Richardson failed to add his score before he was caught behind driving against Harmison.

In his second innings Richardson faced 309 balls in 435 minutes with 10 fours.

That meant the 32-year-old Auckland opener had batted for over 13 and half a hours in the match, a magnificent feat of concentration.

Richardson's dismissal sparked a fine spell from Harmison with the Durham quick taking three for 14 in 21 balls.

Next to go was Astle who after a 49 featuring six fours edged behind.

Daniel Vettori (five) also fell to the Harmison-Geraint Jones combination, the Kent wicket-keeper taking a fine two-handed catch after diving low to his left.

All-rounder Chris Cairns (14), in what was his last Lord's innings before his retirement as a Test player, fell next when he swept left-arm spinner Ashley Giles to Mark Butcher on the midwicket boundary.

New Zealand were then 310 for nine. Giles bowled 35 overs unchanged from the Nursery End Sunday, his lengthy spell yielding three wickets for 64 runs.

Geraint Jones's mixed day with the gloves — he conceded 14 byes — continued when he dropped tailender Daryl Tuffey on four off Harmison, having got both hands to the ball after diving to his right.

New Zealand were 310 for nine and there was more frustration for England 12 runs later when paceman Simon Jones bowled last man Chris Martin (two) off a no-ball. All-rounder Andrew Flintoff eventually bowled Martin for seven.

McCullum's was one of three wickets to fall in the morning session. He was caught behind off Jones, the most accurate of England's quicks Sunday, when in sight of a cherished Lord's century.

McCullum, 22, faced 162 balls including 14 fours, his seventh Test innings lasting just under four hours with New Zealand 180 for two at that stage.

At lunch the tourists were 198 for four after Giles, aided by two sharp Nasser Hussain catches at silly point, had taken two wickets in three balls to dismiss Scott Styris (four) and Craig McMillan (nought).

Astle had been off the field with 'flu during England's innings on Saturday and so was not allowed to bat until the fall of the fifth wicket.

However, New Zealand's innings revolved around Richardson, cruelly given out lbw in the first innings despite edging on to his pads.

But he gained a cherished place on the Lord's honours board when, having survived 29 balls in the 90s, he eventually reached three figures with a pushed single off Giles. His hundred came off 289 balls including nine fours.


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