Ravichandran Ashwin claimed six wickets as New Zealand were dismissed for just 159 by India and forced to follow on during Day Three of the first Test in Hyderabad yesterday. An unbeaten 43 from James Franklin was the best the Black Caps could muster as they slumped from an overnight score of 106 for five to be skittled out at lunch.
Ashwin finished with stunning figures of six for 31 while fellow spinner Pragyan Ojha added three for 44 as India ensured a first-innings lead of 279 and left New Zealand facing the follow on.
Rain, a pain
They improved slightly in their second innings, reaching 41 for one before heavy rain halted play for the day. Franklin began the day on 31 but could do nothing to prevent wickets disappearing at the other end thanks to some masterful bowling from India.
The visitors had added just five runs to their overnight score when Kruger van Wyk was trapped lbw by Umesh Yadav for a duck. Doug Bracewell managed to at least get off the mark but found himself walking back to the pavilion on 17 after missing a flighted ball from Ojha which resulted in wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni whipping off the bails.
Ashwin then came to the fore and mopped up the three remaining New Zealand wickets in just four overs. Jeetan Patel was caught and bowled by the India spinner for 10 before Ashwin completed his five-wicket haul by removing Trent Boult on four - Gautam Gambhir taking the catch at short leg.
Chris Martin then fell to Ashwin's next delivery to leave New Zealand facing an immediate return to the crease and the prospect of a heavy defeat.
The Black Caps reached 26 in their second turn but then saw another wicket fall to Ojha, who removed Martin Guptill lbw for 16.
Fellow opener Brendon McCullum was also on 16 while Kane Williamson had added three runs when the weather intervened, much to the relief of the visitors.