New Zealand firmly on top against England in first Test after taking lead to 227 at Lord’s

England cut New Zealand to 56-4 on day two at Lord’s only by Daryl Mitchell and Tom Blundell’s unbroken fifth wicket position of 180 to stretch the Black Caps’ lead to 227 by stumps. watch day three from 10.15am Saturday on Sky Sports Cricket

New Zealand took control of the first LV= Insurance Test on day two at Lord’s with Daryl Mitchell and Tom Blundell dampening England’s momentum with an unbroken 180 to carry the Tourists to a 227-run lead.

New Zealand looked in danger of being knocked down for the second time in the game when they fell to 56-4 in their second innings, at which point their lead was just 47, having retreated weakly to 132 on their first hit.

England closer Matthew Potts (2-50), who went 4-13 on day one, continued his promising debut by taking out Kane Williamson (15) once again and then Tom Latham (14) in a double flurry before lunch. .

But Mitchell (97th) and Blundell (90th) recorded their fourth and fifth Test of fifty respectively – and the first by any player in this match – during a busy fifth-wicket partnership that took New Zealand to 236-4 and undermined to England.

With the home team’s batting proving incredibly flimsy over the last year or so, even in this Test with Ben Stokes’ side grouped for 141 in their opening dig, New Zealand will be confident of winning the game, even if a doubtful prognosis in the coming days could hamper them.

Surely England must make inroads with the new ball on Saturday morning – it will be handed out in extra time – if they are to stand a chance of claiming just a second win in 18 Tests and start the Stokes and Brendon McCullum era on a high.

England started the second day 116-7 (Stokes’s men collapsed from 59-0 the night before in a 17-wicket day) and were hoping to eke out a lead.

They managed to build a nine-run lead before their first inning ran out at 35 minutes, adding 25 to their overnight total.

Tim Southee (4-55) floored Stuart Broad (9) and then caught Ben Foakes (7) before Trent Boult (3-21) defeated Test debutant Matt Parkinson (8), leaving James Anderson undefeated with seven.

Parkinson had only arrived at Lord’s on Thursday afternoon after being called up as Jack Leach’s replacement with concussion.

The Lancashire leg spinner was given his cap on Friday morning by England spin coach Jeetan Patel and then went on to play a largely tidy 14 bowls but ultimately no wicket overs later in the day.

With the bat, Parkinson’s strike for two through the side of the leg took England into the lead after Anderson’s push to the ground leveled the scores – the last-wicket pair joined forces at 130-9 with their team still trailing by two runs.

When fellow Parkinson Test rookie Potts banished Williamson and Latham later in the morning session, both stuck behind, New Zealand were reeling at 35-3.

Williamson outplayed Potts with Jonny Bairstow on the third slip and Latham feathered goalkeeper Foakes – Latham’s review was to no avail as UltraEdge showed a slight rise.

Anderson had made the initial breakthrough by sending off Will Young (1), just as he had on the first day, with Foakes at receiver.

After the interval, Anderson’s new partner Broad had Devon Conway (13) choke the side of the leg, raising the possibility of a two-day trial finish, something not seen at Lord’s since 1888 .

However, the association of Mitchell and Blundell extinguished that possibility, as the New Zealand batsmen now look to clinch what would be their second and third Test tons, respectively, on day three.

With England collapsing once again, former star batsman Kevin Pietersen spoke about the team’s current top six and why he’s a fan of a man who missed out on selection for this Test, the no-limit Harry Brook.

26 – the years since a leg spinner bowled for England in a Lord’s Test. The man back then was Ian Salisbury, against Pakistan in 1996

fifteen – the highest score at which any New Zealand top four batsman was sent off in this Test. The only other time England have inflicted that on an opponent was against Australia in Sydney in 1888.

13.7 – the average association for the first 24 wickets in the match, before the three-figure standing between Mitchell and Blundell

180 – New Zealand’s record fifth-wicket partnership against England, with Mitchell and Blundell equaling the position shared at Lord’s in 1994 between Martin Crowe and Shane Thomson

Tom Blundell from New Zealand, speaking with sky sports: It was hard work throughout, but building that association was very enjoyable. We just had to dig and I think we did very well.

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