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Broad Best Demolishes New Zealand

Broad Best Demolishes New Zealand
Broad Best Demolishes New Zealand
©Action Images

England 232 & 213 (Southee 6-50) beat
New Zealand 207 & 68 (Broad 7-44) by 170 runs
First Test, Lord’s
Scorecard | Day One | Day Two | Day Three
Report by Daniel Grummitt
More: England 'Magnificent' - Botham

A Test match that has swung this way and that throughout finally lurched towards England for one last decisive time as they humbled New Zealand for just 68 to win by 170 runs not long after lunch on day four.

Stuart Broad answered his critics in the best possible manner by taking a career-best seven for 44 as the tourists folded.

James Anderson took the other two wickets to fall as he and Broad bowled unchanged throughout the 22.3 overs that it took to dismiss New Zealand.

Only two of their batsmen reached double figures, with top-scorer Neil Wagner the last man to go in suitably farcical circumstances. He hit a swirling pull to long leg, who dropped the catch, but when the return came in he was stranded mid pitch and all Anderson had to was whip off the bails to complete a sensational victory.

The events of this morning were far removed from those on day one, when the pitch and outfield were written off as slow and making for unattractive Test cricket. Many sighed and thought they were in for a dull five days, but how wrong they were.

Tim Southee completed England’s second innings collapse of eight for 54 first thing and became only the second New Zealander, after Dion Nash in 1994, to take 10 wickets in a Test at Lord’s. Even then Stuart Broad showed signs of being in the mood for a match-winning contribution as he eased his way to 26 off 25 balls to haul England up to 213.

That, though, soon paled into insignificance as he sent Peter Fulton packing with his third ball to trigger the unexpected chain of events.

Just 10 overs later, he landed the killer blow just before lunch when Brendon McCullum, New Zealand’s last vain hope, was trapped in front to make it 29 for six.

In between, he jagged one across Hamish Rutherford, who lost his off stump, had Ross Taylor pushing a good length ball to Alastair Cook at slip, and invited Kane Williamson to drive firmly to Steven Finn at cover. With Anderson finding another “ball of the season” to do away with Dean Brownlie, the tourists were sunk.

After lunch, England merely had to keep their heads and soak up the adulation of the crowd as they enjoyed a virtual lap of honour. Tim Southee was dropped but then pulled Broad to Joe Root to make it 41 for seven, with BJ Watling giving Anderson his second wicket when on 13.

A hobbling Bruce Martin aimed a swipe at Broad and was bowled for one with the run-out of Wagner completing the job.

And so the beauty of Test cricket was summed up in a nutshell. Two teams can battle tooth and nail for three days with nothing to separate them, only for one to suddenly seize the initiative and for everything to be over two hours later.

All it requires is a bit of luck and some serious sporting excellence. On this occasion, that excellence was provided by Stuart Broad, who showed just why England persist with him despite there sometimes appearing to be no grounds for doing so.

He bowled that little bit fuller than he often does and was richly rewarded with a bag of wickets.

© Cricket World 2013

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