Finn, Trott Dig In To Secure Draw For England
England successfully batted through the final day of the opening Test against New Zealand in Dunedin to salvage a morale-boosting draw.
Such a result looked a long way off when they were bowled out for 167 on day two but after New Zealand declared on 460 for nine, England amassed 421 for six in their second innings.
They had resumed the final day on 234 for one and with nightwatchman Steven Finn on the way to a maiden Test half-century, were ahead by lunch.
Jonathan Trott also added a half-century and although Neil Wagner picked up three wickets, England continued to bat until stumps were drawn.
The only man to fall in the morning session was Nick Compton, who shuffled across his pads to be trapped in front by Wagner. He had made 117 in 310 balls with 12 fours; runs that he, and England, desperately needed after the duck in the first innings.
Finn (56) and Trott (52) then added 90 for the third wicket, which fell when Wagner had Trott caught and bowled before quickly removing Kevin Pietersen, caught behind for 12.
Then Finn's 203-ball vigil came to an end when he was trapped in front by Bruce Martin and when Joe Root was run out by Tim Southee without scoring, England had lost four wickets for 35 runs.
Nevertheless, they were by then far enough ahead to be completely safe, and the game ended with Ian Bell (26 not out) and Matthew Prior (23 not out) threatening to build yet another substantial partnership.
Wagner finished with figures of three for 141 from 43 overs with Trent Boult (1-49) and Martin (1-90) the others to take a wicket.
The second Test gets underway on 14th March in Wellington, where conditions are widely expected to favour England, something that could make New Zealand's inability to hammer home their early advantage in this game all the more important.
England could also face an interesting decision at the toss - should they win it. Wellington is often seen as a 'bowl-first' track, but after New Zealand's bowlers were in the field for almost two days, Alastair Cook may well be tempted to keep on batting.
© Cricket World 2013