New Zealand vs England 1st Test Day 5: Wagner stars as New Zealand go 1-0 up

Neil Wagner three wickets New Zealand England 1st Test Day 5 Auckland cricket

Neil Wagner finished with figures of 3-77 off 32 overs

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

New Zealand left-arm seamer Neil Wagner took a three-wicket haul to lead his side to an innings and 49-run win over England on the fifth day of the first Test in Auckland.

Wagner was well supported by fellow left-arm pace bowler Trent Boult and spinner Todd Astle, who both took three wickets. With the trio taking nine wickets between them, New Zealand claimed a 1-0 lead in the two-Test series.

Starting off the day on 132/3, England only added 10 runs to their overnight score before batsman Dawid Malan was caught by Tom Latham at second slip off the bowling of Tim Southee for 23.

Jonny Bairstow managed to make 26 runs before he was caught by New Zealand captain Kane Williamson at short midwicket off the bowling of Astle.

Moeen Ali didn’t fare much better as he was trapped lbw off the bowling of Boult for 28.

Moeen was not given out initially, but Williamson opted to review the decision. Replays showed that the ball had hit Moeen’s pad first and he was subsequently on his way back to the pavilion.

Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes stabilised the innings with an 83-run partnership, during which Stokes brought up his half-century.

Ben Stokes 66 New Zealand England 1st Test Day 5 Auckland cricket

Ben Stokes scored his 13th Test fifty

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

However, just as England were beginning to fight back, Wagner provided a massive breakthrough as he removed Stokes for 66, which came off 188 balls and included six boundaries.

Craig Overton fell shortly after, while Woakes went on to make 52 off 118 deliveries, which included eight boundaries, before he was sent packing by Wagner.

Chris Woakes 52 New Zealand England 1st Test Day 5 Auckland cricket

Chris Woakes struck his fourth half-century in Test cricket

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

New Zealand sealed the deal when James Anderson was caught by Boult at mid-off off the bowling of Astle for one run.

Wagner, Astle and Boult picked up three wickets apiece, while Southee claimed one.

England captain Joe Root was disappointed with his side’s performance, and said: “Yeah we weren’t good enough [on day one]. We have to learn some lessons quickly. It’s difficult to single any one things out, we didn’t deal with the swing and seam very well.

“I thought the character of the dressing room today were fantastic. I thought today was a great exhibition of the guys determination of playing for the country. Finger’s fine and I should be fine to play next game.”

Williamson was delighted to have won, and said: “It was a fantastic performance from us. If we go back to that first innings, we bowled great lengths and also got lucky to find the edges. They fought really hard but it was great we were able to fight the pressure and come through.

“[On the declaration strategy] At the end of the day, you have to execute after making your choice. All our partnerships were slow-going but in the end they added up for this win. We knew we wanted to come out and play the long game. We didn’t wanna get ahead of ourselves. We knew we had an old ball. We tried to build pressure and then a couple went our way.

“It was great to come out in the last session and do it in front of this crowd. Toddy bowled brilliantly, the wicket took a bit of turn. He had to bide his time but with the pink ball you had to measure what it would do. He was patient and when he got his chance he took it.”

Boult was named Man of the Match.

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