England collapse to 58 all out after New Zealand bowling masterclass
England narrowly avoided their all-time lowest Test score against New Zealand in Auckland
England collapsed to 58 all out against New Zealand as only a defiant last-wicket stand helped them scramble past the lowest total in their 141-year Test history.
Trent Boult (six for 32) and Tim Southee (four for 25) proved unstoppable with the pink ball on day one of the first day-night Test in New Zealand at Auckland’s Eden Park, until Craig Overton and James Anderson came up with belated and brief resistance.
The new-ball pair wreaked havoc as the tourists first marginally managed to pass Test cricket’s all-time lowest total – 26 by New Zealand against them here in 1955.
After falling to 27 for nine, it seemed a long shot England could get anywhere near beating their own historical low of 45 all out against Australia in Sydney in 1887.
But number nine Overton (33no), playing here only because Ben Stokes’ stiff back meant he may not be able to bowl, had other ideas – scoring more than half England’s runs as they instead recorded merely their sixth-lowest total.
The tourists were in big trouble almost immediately, after being put in on a sunny afternoon.
Remarkable. Trent Boult has 6-32, his best Test innings figures. England are all out in their first innings for 58. 20.4 overs bowled. Live scoring | https://t.co/MiIfpeaU9o #NZvENG pic.twitter.com/3NYhpS2mc8— BLACKCAPS (@BLACKCAPS) March 22, 2018
Boult’s new-ball swing had Alastair Cook edging some away movement to second slip in the fifth over – and then Joe Root, having pushed himself back up to number three here, fell for a six-ball duck when he went to drive but was done through the gate as the left-armer bowled him off-stump.
Boult produced another beauty to have Dawid Malan caught-behind by a diving BJ Watling, and Southee got in on the act when Mark Stoneman also edged more swing to the wicketkeeper.
Stokes, back here for his first Test in more than six months after his enforced absence from the Ashes, could not halt the slide.
He was bowled for a duck by one that snaked back through his defences from Boult, and Jonny Bairstow was scoreless too when he pushed a return catch to Southee.
Chris Woakes was next to go, bowled by Boult, and Moeen Ali went the same way – fooled by a yorker from Southee.
Stuart Broad’s attempt to counter-attack resulted only in a blinding catch in the gully by Kiwi captain Kane Williamson off Southee, and the fifth duck of the innings.
Overton refused to go quietly, though, and was unbeaten when Anderson was last out – lobbing a catch to point off Boult to end a partnership of 31.