23 Jul 2012

Black Caps hold on for draw

11:30 am on 23 July 2012

The New Zealand cricketers have plenty to think about ahead of the first Test against the West Indies after having to fight hard just to secure a draw against a Windies President's XI in a three-day warm-up match in Antigua.

Neil Wagner and Daniel Vettori mopped up the tail this morning to dismiss the home side for 326 with New Zealand starting their second innings 177 runs behind.

The Black Caps batsmen struggled for rhythm throughout the match, scoring just 149 in the first innings before scraping their way to 181 for eight in their second attempt.

The top order failed to forge a significant partnership with the new-ball bowlers removing Daniel Flynn for one and Martin Guptill for seven.

More application was shown by Brendon McCullum who struck 51 while Ross Taylor made 19 and Kane Williamson hit 25.

Kruger van Wyk, who came to the crease at 135 for seven, then struck a fighting 38 not out to prop up the batting effort and help push New Zealand past the West Indies first innings total.

Plenty of credit has to go to Wagner who only scored five unbeaten runs but faced 57 balls and stayed at the crease for an hour during a vital a ninth wicket partnership worth 23 runs.

Tall West Indian spinner, Shane Shillingford, was the most dangerous of the bowling attack, picking up five for 77.

Daniel Vettori was the pick of the Black Caps bowlers, ending up with six for 48 while Wagner impressed with three for 65.