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18-Feb-2023 13:09:00 GMT
NZ vs Eng - 1st Test, Bay Oval, day 3

Brilliant Broad puts England on course for victory

New Zealand 306 (Blundell 138, Conway 77, Robinson 4-54) and 63 for 5 (Broad 4-21) need another 331 runs to beat England 325 for 9 dec (Brook 89, Duckett 84, Wagner 4-82) and 374 (Root 57, Brook 54, Foakes 51, Tickner 3-55)

Mount Maunganui: Stuart Broad's devastating late burst put England on course for victory over New Zealand on day three of the first Test in Mount Maunganui.

Bowling with the pink ball under lights in one of his trademark destructive spells, Broad took four of the five wickets to fall, all bowled, to leave New Zealand in tatters on 63-5 in their chase of 394.

Broad's first wicket, that of Devon Conway, was the 1,002nd he and James Anderson have taken in Tests together, making them the most successful bowling partnership in the history of the game.

England's late dominance was in contrast to the fluctuations of earlier in the day, when the tourists had to come through a see-saw battle to get to 374 all out.

Joe Root made a busy 57, Harry Brook a thrilling 54 off 41 balls and Ollie Pope accelerated to 49 off 46, but England still needed an important 51 from Ben Foakes when the game hung in the balance.

Not only did England set New Zealand a target that would be their highest ever to win a Test, they were also able to bowl for two hours with the pink ball as darkness fell.

Broad took full advantage, his 4-21 in a 10-over spell setting England on the way to what would be a 10th win in 11 Tests.

England have perhaps not always been at their best in this match but are set for a big victory after a thrilling, fluctuating day at a sun-kissed Bay Oval.

A breathless first session had the visitors pile on 158 runs for the loss of four wickets, during which time the treatment dished out to New Zealand pace bowler Neil Wagner left him with figures of 13-0-110-2, narrowly missing out on the indignity of having the worst economy rate ever in a Test innings.

Given the increased difficulty attached to batting against the pink ball under floodlights, it is uncanny how each of the three night sessions in this Test have seen one of these teams starting an innings.

Perhaps crucially, New Zealand, who won the toss, have had to do it twice to England's once. Whereas England reached 79-2 on day two, the Black Caps' combined return on days one and three is 100-8.

Broad was below-par in taking 1-72 in the first innings, but here was at his sublime best, nipping the pink ball from a full length to find gaping gaps in Kiwi techniques.

The history-making moment was a nip-backer to bowl left-hander Conway and the best of the four was a trimmer to bowl Kane Williamson, with away movement somehow passing a defensive stroke to shave the off bail.

Tom Latham was dropped at second slip by Zak Crawley, only for the left-hander to be bowled through the gate, then Broad completed a quartet of strikes on the stumps to get Tom Blundell.

In between, Ollie Robinson had Henry Nicholls caught behind and at one stage New Zealand were 28-5 before Daryl Mitchell and Michael Bracewell somehow battled to the close.

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