Advantage England

Matt Prior’s swift innings propelled England’s late order effort.
Matt Prior’s swift innings propelled England’s late order effort.

WELLINGTON – England continued to turn the screw on day two of the second Test against New Zealand at the Basin Reserve today.

Having reached 465 all out by tea – courtesy of second day half-centuries from Matt Prior and Kevin Pietersen – England then reduced the hosts to 66 for 3 by stumps.

James Anderson and Stuart Broad did the damage with the ball, with England taking a 399-run lead into the third day.

Anderson struck first as Peter Fulton was snaffled at first slip by Alastair Cook for just one.And although New Zealand attempted to rebuild their innings Broad struck twice in two deliveries. Hamish Rutherford (23) had looked comfortable until he found Cook in the slips, while Ross Taylor was clean bowled for a golden duck.

Kane Williamson, though, remained defiant to finish the day on 32 not out.

Earlier Prior and Pietersen had helped to push England to 465 all out. Pietersen’s painstaking half-century was his first significant contribution of the tour, while Prior (82) upped the ante late in the innings with a 77-ball 50.

England had been in danger of letting their good work from day one go to waste as they lost three wickets in the morning session.

Trott (121) fell to the first ball he faced, edging Trent Boult behind to BJ Watling, while Ian Bell and Joe Root failed to make an impression. Bell (11) was well caught by Fulton off Bruce Martin, with the spinner also having Root (10) caught behind.

Pietersen, whose 50 had come off 112 balls, finally departed for 73 after the lunch interval, with Martin (4-130) claiming his fourth wicket, while Broad added just six before he was caught by Watling off Boult to leave England 374-7.

An eighth-wicket stand of 83 between Prior and Steven Finn, though, helped England frustrate the hosts. Prior led from the front with with two straight sixes off the pace of Neil Wagner before New Zealand finally mopped up the tail.

Finn (24) drove Wagner straight to short extra-cover; Prior’s reverse-sweep at Kane Williamson failed to clear short third-man, and Monty Panesar edged the part-time off-spinner to slip. (Sky)

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