The ongoing first Test between England and New Zealand is set up nicely with the hosts needing 61 runs to win with five wickets in hand. Chasing 277 runs to win, England have Joe Root batting on 77 while Ben Stokes also scored a vital half-century before getting out in the final hour of the day’s play. However, Ben Foakes did well to stick around with the former skipper till the end of the play. The credit for the fact that England managed to make a comeback and be in a winning position goes to Stuart Broad.
New Zealand were in a strong position when the day started but Broad triggered a sensational collapse picking up three wickets reducing the Kiwis to 251/7. The visitors who looked strong to post a 350+ target earlier were bundled out for just 285 runs. It gave England a real shot at victory and Root held one end well despite the home side struggling at 69/4 at one stage.
Broad, speaking after the end of day’s play, looked confident about his team’s chances to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series. He lauded Joe Root for playing a fine knock while also felt that Foakes has stuck around well so far. Having said that, the pace bowler also noted that the lower-order batters will have to contribute as well on Day four.
“It’s had a bit of everything. It’s up to us as a group of players to do everything we can to get over the line, and it would be very special, but if it doesn’t work that way we step up to the plate in Nottingham. But I’ve got a really good feeling about tomorrow. Joe Root is one of the calmest, England’s best-ever batsmen, and Foakesy I thought settled really nicely, and then it’s going to be up to the lower order to chase these runs, so it’s set up to be a brilliant morning,” the 35-year-old said.
Enjoyed the feeling of getting the crowd going, says Broad
Stuart Broad was the one who got the crowd going early on the third day with his three-wicket 84th over picking up wickets of Daryl Mitchell, Colin de Grandhomme and Kyle Jamieson. It opened up the game completely for England as he ended up with the figures of 3/76 in the innings. Reacting to his amazing spell, Broad stated how much he loves to get the crowd going.
“We were a bit disappointed yesterday afternoon…they played really well for their runs. We knew we had to strike with the new ball because the Test match was riding on it. If New Zealand get 340-350 it’s a different game. I really enjoyed the feeling of getting the crowd going, lifting the energy in the stadium. The crowd responded brilliantly and so did the players,” Broad added.