Mon | Apr 24, 2017

NZ recover after losing early wickets

Published:Saturday | May 30, 2015 | 5:00 AM
England's James Anderson (left) celebrates his 400th Test wicket after New Zealand's Martin Guptill was caught by Ian Bell for zero on the first day of the second Test match between England and New Zealand at Headingley.

LEEDS, England (AP):

Luke Ronchi scored a 70-ball 88 on his Test debut as New Zealand went on the attack after a woeful start to close on 297-8 on day one of the second Test against England on Friday.

Jimmy Anderson became the 12th player - and first from England - to pass the 400-wicket barrier in Tests by removing Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson for ducks in the third over, reducing the Black Caps to 2-2 at Headingley.

Opener Tom Latham (84) led New Zealand's recovery only to be upstaged by wicketkeeper-batsman Ronchi, who came to the crease with his team struggling on 144-5 and struck 13 fours and three sixes in a flamboyant innings.

"I was trying to enjoy it as much as I could," said the 34-year-old Ronchi, who was drafted in as a replacement for injured allrounder Corey Anderson.

"It could be my one and only Test - I'd have hated to go out there and not play my natural game."

Latham and Ronchi - who put on 120 runs for the sixth wicket, at nearly five runs an over - fell to Stuart Broad in the space of three balls in the final hour, leaving the match evenly poised going into day two.

England lead the two-Test series 1-0.

New Zealand launched a recovery by maintaining their trademark aggressive approach that is more akin to one-day and Twenty20 cricket - captain Brendon McCullum (41), for example, smashed his first ball for six over extra cover and Ronchi was on course for the fastest century by a Test debutant. Nearly 70 per cent of the runs came in boundaries.

With rain forecast for later in the test and New Zealand needing a victory to square the series, the tourists didn't really have another option.