WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Daryl Mitchell scored his first test half-century in his debut match as New Zealand continued to thwart England in the second test at Seddon Park in Hamilton, reaching 315-6 at tea on the second day on Saturday.
Mitchell brought up his milestone when he rocked back and pulled a short Ben Stokes delivery to the midwicket fence for a fifth boundary. He had also belted a massive six off part-time legspinner Joe Denly before lunch.
Wicketkeeper BJ Watling was dismissed for 55, his 18th test half century, on the penultimate delivery before tea to end a 124-run partnership with Mitchell (63 not out) and give England some hope heading into the final session.
New Zealand had resumed on 173-3 with Tom Latham (101) and Henry Nicholls (five) at the crease after almost all of the final session on Friday was rained off.
Stuart Broad struck in the second over when Latham, having just hit his 16th boundary through mid-on, left a delivery that held its line and clipped his off stump.
Latham’s dismissal reduced the hosts to 182-4 and England quickly upped the pressure with Nicholls caught by Broad off Sam Curran when he top edged a hook down to fine leg.
With the home side reduced to 191-5 and England looking to run through the tail, Watling and Mitchell stopped the rot and then seized back the momentum of the game after lunch on a wicket that is getting easier to bat on.
Broad finally broke the partnership with a delivery to Watling that reared up and the ball flew to Rory Burns at gully.
New Zealand won the first match at Bay Oval in Mt. Maunganui courtesy of a career-best 205 from Watling, who also anchored a succession of middle-order partnerships in New Zealand’s innings and 65-run victory.