Cricket: New Zealand Fight Back To Claim Dominance on Day 2

Jeff CheshireAnalyst IIDecember 10, 2011

HOBART, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 10:  Trent Boult of New Zealand appeals for the wicket of Mitchell Starc of Australia during day two of the Second Test match between Australia and New Zealand at Bellerive Oval on December 10, 2011 in Hobart, Australia.  (Photo by Quinn Rooney/Getty Images)
Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

New Zealand have fought back on day two of their test match against Australia to hold a handy lead 44 overs into their second innings.

Australia entered the day in the box seat, bowling New Zealand out for 150 and having nine wickets to spare with all their big guns still to come in their batting lineup. 

But New Zealand soon saw to that, as what has been called the "greenest wicket in world cricket" proved to be just as difficult for the Australian batsmen as it did for the Kiwi's. 

Chris Martin and Trent Boult picked up where they left off last night, bowling a good length and getting plenty out of the pitch to have the batsmen struggling.

Indeed it didn't take long for the first breakthrough, as David Warner fell for what turned out to be a not so bad score of 15, looking to drive but edging through to the slips. 

Ricky Ponting followed in what was one of the ugliest dismissals you'll ever see, getting trapped in front on five. Even he didn't seem to know what shot he was trying to play.

Usman Khawaja and Michael Clarke offered some resistance, but it couldn't last and a steady stream of wickets saw Australia six down at lunch with all their recognised batters back in the pavilion.

A solid partnership between Peter Siddle and James Pattinson saw Australia weren't entirely disgraced, but it wasn't enough to save the home side from being bowled out for 136.

New Zealand just used four bowlers, all of whom were outstanding. While it may be said the pitch was heavily in their favour, the job still must be done, and the New Zealand seamers delivered the goods. Trent Boult must get a special mention though, with figures of 13 overs, four maidens and 3/29 on debut. 

The New Zealand openers of Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum didn't appear to have anywhere near the same problems the Australians had when they came out for their second innings, battling their way through in a gritty display before both falling in quick succession on 16 and 12, respectively.

Jesse Ryder provided a cameo performance of 16, but it was Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson who delivered the goods, both remaining unbeaten at stumps, putting on 66 together.

New Zealand will resume tomorrow at 139/3 on a pitch that seems to be getting easier and easier to bat on as time passes. They will be looking to add a large amount to their lead to ensure Australia don't get near it. But with three days to play and the match already into the second innings, it seems almost certain there will be a result.