New Zealand off to solid start despite Guptill loss

New Zealand off to solid start despite Guptill loss
By Reuters

23/09/2016 at 13:47

Tom Latham and Kane Williamson featured in an unbroken century stand to lead New Zealand's reply against India, taking the visitors to 152 for one at tea.

Rain washed out the final session of the second day of the first test against India on Friday.

New Zealand had earlier overcome the loss of Martin Guptill to reach 71 for one wicket at lunch in reply to India's first innings total of 318.

The opener made 21 but could not convert the start into anything substantial, especially when his inability to replicate his limited overs form in Test cricket has jeopardised his place in the squad.

Paceman Umesh Yadav trapped him leg before with a full, swinging delivery.

Latham was batting on 56 at the break, while Williamson was on 65 with New Zealand trailing India by 166 runs at Kanpur's Green Park Stadium where a light drizzle started soon after tea was taken.

Guptill could not convert the start he got and was trapped leg before by a full, swinging delivery from Umesh Yadav.

Latham and Williamson looked quite at ease against the spinners who did manage a few leg-before appeals but could not separate them.

The batsmen brought up their individual fifties in successive overs, but not before Latham had survived a scare.

The southpaw went for a sweep shot against Ravindra Jadeja and the deflection hit his boot and popped up for Lokesh Rahul to take the catch at short leg.

The decision was referred to the third umpire who ruled in the batsman's favour after replays suggested the ball had touched the chin strap of Rahul's helmet.

India's batting coach Sanjay Bangar said an early wicket was all the home team needed when play resumes on Saturday.

"It's a matter of getting that breakthrough and putting the pressure back on them," said Bangar.

"We were in a similar position wherein we were 150-odd for one at one point of time. Obviously when the ball starts to get older and the batsmen tire a bit, you get a breakthrough and it can be a different ball game."

Resuming on 291 for nine, the Indian tail wagged to take the hosts past 300.

With number 11 Yadav (nine) at the other end, Jadeja (42 not out) took the onus of scoring on himself, contributing 26 of the 27 runs India added to their overnight score.

Jadeja hit Mitchell Santner for a six but could not get to his second test half century as Neil Wagner had Yadav caught behind to end a 41-run partnership for the last wicket.