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ENG vs NZ: England beat New Zealand by 124 runs in 1st test at Lord's

London: England took a thrilling first test at Lord's when it bowled out New Zealand for 220 to win by 124 runs with 9.3 overs to spare in the final session on Monday.Six bowlers shared
eng vs nz england beat new zealand by 124 runs in...
India TV News Desk May 26, 2015 6:55 IST

London: England took a thrilling first test at Lord's when it bowled out New Zealand for 220 to win by 124 runs with 9.3 overs to spare in the final session on Monday.

Six bowlers shared the wickets as the team produced a victory following a tumultuous buildup, including the sacking of their coach, in an engrossing match that was a gift to test cricket.

Fortunes fluctuated daily, and swung England's way for good with terrific swing bowling at the start of New Zealand's second innings.

The Kiwis lost their openers within the first seven balls, and Ross Taylor for 8, and in half an hour they were in survival mode.

They stalled England for 62 more overs, and were finished off under lights, Stuart Broad taking his third wicket.

"It was a real team effort," captain Alastair Cook said. "It's been a rocky road for us over the last two weeks but from the moment the team turned up (last) Monday morning and hacked away around Grove Golf Course, there's been a really good spirit.

"The lads are tired, because mentally they've been on a knife edge for a long time (in the match)."

Just as the wickets on the last day were shared, so were England's match honors.

They were coming off a loss in their last test in the West Indies, and in the interim saw coach Peter Moores sacked and in-form batsman Kevin Pietersen banished again. But England was well-served as usual by Cook and Joe Root, and by allrounder Ben Stokes, the man of the match who used his middle-order promotion to score 193 runs and take three wickets, and new paceman Mark Wood, who claimed four wickets.

The Kiwis have been unbeaten in test series since the last tour here two years ago, and won four of six series to rise two ranking places above England into third.

Home advantage and history gave England a slight advantage coming in, and while the 100th test between them was one of the most compelling, it ended like so many before. New Zealand, searching for just a ninth win over England, still hasn't won here in this century.

The positive-minded New Zealanders would have fancied the target of 345 in 77 overs achievable an hour before lunch, but in a blink they were in tatters.

Openers Martin Guptill and Tom Latham went for ducks, followed by Taylor at 12-3. There was a touch of deja vu about it all, which recalled New Zealand's debacle at Lord's two years ago. Back then, New Zealand earned a target of 239, only to be routed for 68. Panic seized them then, but not on Monday.

James Anderson got the first wicket, his 399th in tests, though not another, and Stuart Broad, the bogeyman in 2013, took the other two.

Kane Williamson and BJ Watling stopped the bleeding for 18 overs spanning lunch, until Stokes brought Lord's back to life by taking out Williamson and captain Brendon McCullum off successive deliveries. When an inswinger deflected off McCullum's pad and sent the bails flying, Stokes was enveloped by an ecstatic England, and the Bank Holiday crowd erupted.

"I've never head Lord's sound like that," Cook said. "Broady ran past me and said, 'This is amazing,' and it was."

Greeted by six slips, Corey Anderson let Stokes' hat-trick ball fly outside off stump.

"My legs were a bit wobbly," Stokes said.

Anderson went on to lash 13 boundaries and a six, and was seventh man out for 67. He had just lost his resolute partner for nearly 27 overs, Watling, who batted more than three hours with a sore right knee for 59, after 61 not out in the first innings.

Their departures exposed the tail, but Mark Craig, Tim Southee, Trent Boult, and debutant Matt Henry delayed England for 12 more overs.

"We scored over 720 runs and took 20 wickets, we ticked off a lot of things that normally lead to a test win," McCullum said. "At key moments we weren't quite able to come out on top. Sometimes you've got to give credit to the opposition for their courage and skill to be able to withstand the pressure you applied on them.

"There'll be no knee-jerk reaction to a performance like this because we were pretty good for most of it."

Indeed, they did what they had to do in the morning by bowling out England quickly for 478 from 429-6.

Cook added nine to his overnight score until he gave a faint inside edge off fast bowler Boult, ending nine hours at the crease on 162. He's only 32 runs from eclipsing Graham Gooch as England's highest test run-scorer, which he will likely do at Leeds in the second test from Friday.

Boult took all four wickets in 17 balls, for match figures of 9-164.

 
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