1 Mar 2024

Black Caps on the ropes against Australia

6:57 pm on 1 March 2024
Australia's Manus Labuschagne prepares to throw the stumps to run out Kane Williamson who has collided mid-pitch with teammate Will Young.

Australia's Manus Labuschagne prepares to throw the stumps to run out Kane Williamson who has collided mid-pitch with teammate Will Young. Photo: Kerry Marshall / www.photosport.nz

The Black Caps are in serious strife at the Basin Reserve.

Trailing by 217, New Zealand was dismissed for 179 in their first innings on day two of the first test against Australia.

Australia opted not to enforce the follow on and build on their 205-run lead.

Some late strikes for the kiwis offered some hope for the hosts, though a dropped catch form the last ball of the day summed things up for New Zealand.

Tim Southee clean bowled Steve Smith for a duck before sending Marnus Labuschagne back to the pavilion for 2.

Southee had the chance to seal the final session with a third, but spilled the opportunity at slip off the bowling of Matt Henry.

It was only an entertaining Henry cameo and a fighting fifty from Glenn Phillips which ensured the Black Caps avoided a complete calamity in their first turn at bat.

The explosive middle order batter plundered 13 fours in his innings of 71 from 70, with Tom Blundell also offering some resistance with 33 and Henry chipping in with a quick-fire 42.

Matt Henry

Matt Henry Photo: Kerry Marshall / www.photosport.nz

However, the damage had well and truly been done, every Australian bowler used getting in on the wickets, with Nathan Lyon claiming four for 43.

Losing eight wickets in less than two sessions and surviving only 43 overs against the Aussie attack is a huge concern for the kiwis.

Phillips told TVNZ he and Henry reassessed the situation in the middle.

"It was about understanding that the pitch was moving around, they were hitting really good areas and we just needed to put pressure back on them. So

to be able to come out and counter attack and give ourselves some momentum was good."

It's been a rough day for the home side.

Chasing Australia's first innings total of 383, New Zealand were soon reduced to 12-3 with Tom Latham out for five and Kane Williamson and Rachin Ravindra both dismissed for ducks.

In trying to get off the mark Williamson had a mid-pitch collision with teammate Will Young and was run out from a direct hit.

In the first session Australia posted a record tenth wicket partnership against New Zealand in Wellington.

Resuming on day two at 279-9, Cameron Green and Josh Hazelwood put on 116 for the last wicket with Hazelwood the last batter out making 22 and Green finishing unbeaten on 174 - his highest test score.

Matt Henry was the most successful of the New Zealand bowlers with 5 for 70.

Will O'Rourke and Scott Kuggeleijn took 2-87 and 2-70 respectively while Rachin Ravindra took 1-24.

There were 41 extras in Australia's total which will be of concern to the Black Caps with 20 of these being wides.

Day three gets underway at 11am tomorrow.