Headingley Test: New Zealand leave England in a spin to win second Test
Leeds (UK): New Zealand off-spinners Kane Williamson and Mark Craig shared six wickets as the Black Caps thrashed England by 199 runs in the second Test at Headingley on Tuesday.
Victory ensured the two-match series ended all square at 1-1 and was just New Zealand's ninth win in 101 Tests against England. This success was also New Zealand's first Test win against England since a 189-run victory at Hamilton in 2008. It meant too they had won a Test in England for only the fifth time, with this victory their first Test success on English soil since an 83-run triumph at The Oval in 1999.
New Zealand's Trent Boult (C) celebrates with his teammates after dismissing England's Adam Lyth on the fifth and final day of the 2nd Test match at Headingley in Leeds, northern England, on Tuesday. Pic/AFP
England, chasing what would have been a Test fourth innings record victory total of 455, were bowled out for 255. Williamson, primarily a batsman and once suspended from bowling in international cricket because of a suspect action, took three wickets for 15 runs in seven overs, including the prize scalp of England captain Alastair Cook (56) Craig finished with three for 73 in 31.5 overs and ended the match when he had Jos Buttler lbw playing no stroke for 73.
New Zealand's BJ Watling was named the man-of-the-match for his 120 in a second innings total of 454 for eight declared. "There was a bit of rain around so it was pleasing to get the job done," Watling told Sky Sports. "To get 450 in the time that we did with help form the tail is very pleasing." Cook and Buttler apart, England offered little in the way of resistance in their second innings.
England resumed Tuesday on 44 without loss and had an outside chance of surpassing the West Indies' record fourth-innings winning total of 418 for seven against Australia at St John's, Antigua, in 2002/03. However, those slim hopes disappeared during a first session where England lost five wickets for 58 runs in 32 overs as they slumped to 102 for five at lunch.
England, after a rain-marred fourth day, resumed with Adam Lyth 24 not out and Cook 18 not out. But Lyth, who made a maiden Test century on his Yorkshire home ground in the first innings, fell for his overnight score when he was caught behind fending at a Trent Boult away-swinger.
Left-arm paceman Boult then bowled Gary Ballance for six with a superb, near yorker-length, inswinger. Craig then struck twice in three balls to reduce England to 62 for four. Ian Bell had made just one when he turned Craig straight to leg-slip Williamson. Bell, one of England's senior batsmen, has managed just 55 runs in eight Test innings since his 143 against the West Indies in Antigua in April.
Joe Root had promised England would "come out all guns blazing" but he lasted just two balls before exiting for a duck when he turned Craig off the face of the bat only for Tom Latham to cling on to a sharp chance. - Four-wicket burst - Williamson then removed dangerman Ben Stokes on the stroke of lunch. "The ball was turning, and that four-wicket burst really hurt us," said Cook.
The skipper's second fifty of the match came after Cook surpassed Graham Gooch as England's highest run scorer in Tests during his first innings 75. His near four hours of second innings resistance ended when Cook was lbw pushing forward to Williamson. Moeen Ali's hundred in last year's corresponding Headingley Test almost saw England to a draw before Sri Lanka won late on the final day.
But on Tuesday he was bowled for two playing no stroke to fast bowler Matt Henry. At tea, England were 206 for eight and needing to survive a minimum of 35 overs to hold out for a draw following their 124-run win in the first Test at Lord's last week. Mark Wood's 40-minute innings of 17 ended when he edged Tim Southee to Craig in the slips before Buttler's error ended the match.