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Rory Burns, Dan Lawrence Half-Centuries Help England Resist New Zealand Charge

Photo: ICC

Photo: ICC

Matt Henry, Trent Boult and Ajaz Patel struck twice each while Rory Burns and Dan Lawrence made fighting half-centuries

Matt Henry, Trent Boult and Ajaz Patel struck twice each while Rory Burns and Dan Lawrence made fighting half-centuries as New Zealand restricted England on the first day of the second Test at Edgbaston.

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At stumps, England were 258 for 7 having opted to bat first. Burns, the opener, made 81 while Lawrence was unbeaten on 67 with Mark Wood (16*).

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England got a good start and were 72-0 at lunch, but lost three wickets for 13 runs shortly after as they slumped to 85-3, with captain Joe Root out for just four.

But opener Rory Burns, fresh from his hundred in the drawn first Test at Lord’s last week, kept them going even as NZ struck at the other end.

Henry, in for the veteran Tim Southee — one of three New Zealand players rested ahead of next week’s inaugural World Test Championship final against India at Southampton — started the slump.

Dom Sibley tried to leave a Henry away-swinger but was caught behind for 35.

England’s 72-1 became 73-2 when Zak Crawley’s miserable run continued with a duck, the batsman caught in the slips after a loose shot off left-arm paceman Neil Wagner — the only surviving member of New Zealand’s attack from Lord’s.

It was Crawley’s ninth single-figure score in 11 Test innings since his stunning 267 against Pakistan last year.

Henry then captured the prize wicket of key batsman Root, caught behind off an excellent outswinger that moved late.

England went to tea at 152 for 4 but Trent Boult struck after the break, having Burns and James Bracey 0 (1) caught behind the stumps. Ajaz Patel made 20 before being lbw to Ajaz Patel.

Lawrence fought on at one end and went past his half-century, while Mark Wood gave him company. The duo added an unbroken 36 runs when stumps were drawn.

Root had won the toss and batted despite overcast conditions that appeared to favour his attack, once again without a specialist spinner.

New Zealand had to make three injury-enforced changes, with captain and key batsman Kane Williamson (elbow), spinner Mitchell Santner (cut finger) and BJ Watling (sore back) all missing from the side.

Their places were taken by Will Young, Ajaz Patel and Tom Blundell respectively, with Tom Latham captaining the team.

Meanwhile, James Anderson’s 162nd appearance saw him become England’s most-capped Test player, breaking the record he had shared with retired former captain Alastair Cook.

England made one change, with fast bowler Olly Stone replacing Ollie Robinson who, following a successful on-field Test debut at Lord’s, was suspended from international cricket after the emergence of historic racist and sexist Twitter posts.

(AFP inputs)

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