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WI mount fightback in second Test
Half-centuries from vice-captain Kraigg Brathwaite and rookie Shimron Hetmyer underlined a strong West Indies effort but they faced a massive task in saving second Test, after wicket-keeper Tom Blundell’s hundred on debut left the Black Caps in a near impregnable position at the Basin Reserve.
At stumps on day three, the Caribbean side were 214 for two in their second innings but still some 172 runs adrift of avoiding an innings defeat and going one down in the two-match series.
Brathwaite was unbeaten on 79 and partnered by Shai Hope on 24, with the pair having so far posted 48 in an unbroken third wicket stand.
The 20-year-old Hetmyer, in his fourth Test, struck a bold 66 to pick up his maiden Test half-century while opener Kieran Powell once again got a start but failed to carry on when he perished for 40.
Seamer Matt Henry has claimed both wickets to fall to end with two for 33.
Blundell had earlier converted his overnight unbeaten 57 into 107 not out, becoming the first New Zealand wicket-keeper to score a hundred on debut.
The right-hander faced 180 balls and struck 13 fours and a six all told as the Black Caps, resuming on 447 for nine, added a further 73 before declaring on 520 for nine, 20 minutes before lunch.
The Wellington-born 27-year-old cruised to 96 at the first drinks break but then spent another half-hour battling tight Windies bowling, before he could reach three figures.
Seamer Kemar Roach finished with three for 85 while fellow pacer Miguel Cummins (2-92) and off-spinner Roston Chase (2-95) ended with two wickets apiece.
Behind by 386 runs Brathwaite and Powell steered the visitors to nine without loss at lunch before pushing on afterwards to add 72.
The left-handed Powell stroked five fours and two sixes in a breezy 55-ball innings, looking completely at ease as he appeared headed for a half-century but lost concentration in the first over following a drinks break, and tapped a return catch back to Henry.
Hetmyer, then grabbed the spotlight in an attractive innings but more importantly, he put on 94 for the second wicket with Brathwaite.
Brathwaite raised his 15th Test half-century 45 minutes after tea and Hetmyer followed soon afterwards, before he got a leading edge, and was easily taken at short mid-off by Jeet Raval.
Hope joined Brathwaite to see the Windies safely through the session, facing 66 deliveries and counting four fours.
WEST INDIES 1st Innings 134
NEW ZEALAND 1st Innings
(overnight 447 for nine)
T Latham c Roach b Holder 37
J Raval c wkp Dowrich b Roach 42
*K Williamson c Hope b Roach 1
R Taylor lbw b Roach 93
H Nicholls c Gabriel b Cummins 67
M Santner b Cummins 17
C de Grandhomme c
Powell b Chase 105
+T Blundell not out 107
N Wagner b Chase 3
M Henry c wkp
Dowrich b Gabriel 4
T Boult not out 18
Extras (b4, lb6, w1, nb15) 26
TOTAL (9 wkts decl, 148.4 overs) 520
Fall of wickets: 1-65, 2-68, 3-109, 4-236, 5-272, 6-281, 7-429, 8-437, 9-442.
Bowling: Gabriel 29-4-90-1, Roach 22-6-85-3, Cummins 27-7-92-2, Holder 34-8-102-1, Chase 28-4-95-2, Brathwaite 8-0-46-0.
WEST INDIES 2nd Innings
K Brathwaite not out 79
K Powell c and b Henry 40
S Hetmyer c Raval b Henry 66
S Hope not out 21
Extras (lb3, w5) 8
TOTAL (2 wkts, 66 overs) 214
Fall of wickets: 1-72, 2-166.
Bowling: Boult 15-3-47-0, Henry 15-4-33-2, de Grandhomme 10-2-24-0, Wagner 15-0-89-0, Santner 10-3-18-0, Williamson 1-1-0-0.
Position: WI trail by 172 runs with eight second innings wickets intact.
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