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04-Jun-2022 02:44:00 GMT
Eng vs NZ - 1st Test, Lord's, day 2

Mitchell, Blundell stand to put New Zealand on top

New Zealand 132 (Potts 4-13, Anderson 4-66) and 236 for 4 (Mitchell 97*, Blundell 90*) lead England 141 (Crawley 43, Southee 4-55) by 227 runs

London: England face an uphill task to win the first Test after New Zealand doggedly built an imposing lead on the second day at Lord's.

Daryl Mitchell and Tom Blundell made the home side toil with an unbeaten partnership of 180 that took New Zealand to 236-4, 227 ahead.

At 56-4 just after lunch, New Zealand's lead stood at only 47, but Mitchell, with 97 not out, and Blundell's unbeaten 90 ensured no further wickets fell in the day.

Earlier, England added 25 to their overnight 116-7 to be bowled out for 141, a first-innings advantage of nine.

Including their collapse on Thursday evening, the home side lost their last eight wickets for 49 runs.

England failed to capitalise on dismissing New Zealand for 132 on day one and the first Test under captain Ben Stokes and coach Brendon McCullum is in severe danger of ending in defeat.

In collapsing on Thursday, New Zealand looked rusty, tentative and uncertain, nothing like world Test champions.

They were in danger of a repeat on Friday - all of Will Young, Kane Williamson, Tom Latham and Devon Conway nicked off. In the case of captain Williamson, it was to England debutant Matthew Potts for the second time in the match.

With the Test hanging in the balance, Mitchell and Blundell absorbed the pressure, then put the Black Caps in control.

There were moments when Mitchell played rash drives at James Anderson and was briefly discomforted by short balls from Stokes, while Blundell looked skittish when leg-spinner Matt Parkinson came into the attack.

But both right-handers scored heavily through mid-wicket, with Blundell also playing some attractive strokes square on the off side.

They will each sleep on the verge of a Lord's hundred, and with the prospect of facing the second new ball - England's last hope - on Saturday morning.

At 59-0 and 92-2, England could have taken charge, but after losing five wickets for eight runs on Thursday, began Friday trying to eke out any sort of lead.

They lost the last three wickets in less than seven overs - Stuart Broad was bowled playing an awful swipe at Tim Southee, Ben Foakes flat-footedly prodded the same bowler to first slip and Parkinson edged Trent Boult.

Once again needing a performance from their bowlers, England found that Anderson, Broad and Potts were initially just as good as the first day.

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