Kiwis take control against India

Posted on: March 27, 2009


New Zealand continued to dominate the second Test against India in Napier after impressive knocks from Jesse Ryder and Brendon McCullum.

Ryder added 64 to his overnight total of 137 to amass 201 before being bowled by Zaheer Khan.ff

An aggressive 115 from McCullum and 55 from Daniel Vettori steered the Kiwis to a total of 619-9 declared.

Jeetan Patel and skipper Vettori took one and two wickets respectively as the tourists slumped to 79-3 at the close.

Ryder’s performance is further evidence of his burgeoning talent in the Test arena.

In a 14-inning career to date he has already scored two centuries and four half centuries.

In scoring 200, Ryder becomes only the 11th New Zealand player in history to do so and he was visibly emotional in achieving the feat.

“I’m pretty much speechless,” said the 24-year-old. “I wasn’t expecting to go out and score a double century. I just knuckled down and played my game and it came off.

“No disrespect to Bangladesh and Zimbabwe but to get a century against a top quality side like India means a lot, so that was probably the reason for the emotion.”

Already 1-0 down in this series and facing the threat of India winning their first ever series in New Zealand, it was vital the Black Caps pressed home their advantage from the first day on a track suited for batting.

Thanks to Ryder and overnight partner James Franklin they began well against what was, a below-par Indian bowling display.

The pair guided the hosts past the 400 mark – only the third time they have reached such a milestone during Vettori’s captaincy – before Franklin was needlessly run out when he failed to back up a makeable single, allowing Yuvraj Singh to throw to Dinesh Karthik to break the stumps.

This brought McCullum to the wicket, who immediately took the attack to India, timing the ball with typical fluency to score at speed.

In the 124th over of the innings Ryder reached his double century but was barely able to soak up the moment before he dragged a Zaheer Khan delivery on to his own stumps.

Vettori joined McCullum and the pair guided New Zealand firstly to a record score at McLean Park and then past 600.

With this milestone reached the two were out in quick succession shortly after tea to the bowling of Ishant Sharma.

Daniel Vettori

Firstly, Sharma bowled Vettori just five runs past his half century and then had McCullum caught when he pulled a short delivery straight to Sachin Tendulkar at deep point.

An over later Patel whipped a Harbhajan Singh delivery straight to Sharma at midwicket to be the ninth man out, prompting a New Zealand declaration with the total at 619.

India’s reply got off to a solid enough start with Virender Sehwag beginning purposefully against the new-ball pairing of Chris Martin and Franklin.

However, when the breakthrough came it was at Sehwag’s expense as the batsmen attempted a needless sweep slog from outside off-stump and succeeded only in edging to keeper McCullum.

At the other end Gautum Gambhir was visibly frustrated as he found runs harder to come by and it was an attempt to amend this himself that was his undoing.

In Jeetan Patel’s first over he came down the track and mistimed his lofted drive straight to Vettori at mid-off.

Night-watchman Sharma lasted 13 scoreless deliveries before failing to pick Vettori’s arm ball and being trapped lbw.

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