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NZ vs ENG, 2nd Test: Kiwi Bowlers Held Their Nerves To Clinch Cliffhanger

image-lenpo3y4Wagner picked up 4 wickets [Twitter]

What a game we have just witnessed. Test cricket is well and truly alive and two outstanding teams endorsed for this beautiful game.

Nail-biting finish, nerve wrecking moments, run-outs, the day saw everything as New Zealand held their nerves to win the second Test by just 1 run. It has been the fourth time that a team has won a Test match after being enforced the follow-on. Despite getting all the criticism, Neil Wagner turned out to be the hero of the day, picking up 4 wickets to seal the deal for his side.

How the Day panned out?

Nightwatchman, Ollie Robinson departed early, and Ben Duckett followed him soon as the visitors were in a tricky situation at one stage. Soon, things turned from bad to worse when Ollie Pope and Harry Brook departed in quick successions and New Zealand could smell victory from a country mile.

A miscommunication, or you could say a lapse in concentration cost Brook his wicket. Joe Root dabbed a length ball towards gully and called for a single. A bit of yes-no between the two batters and the throw was perfect towards the keeper who dislodged the bails in a flash.

After a mess made by Joe Root, he started the resurrection part alongside Ben Stokes. The duo started the repair work, but Wagner continued his love-affair with short-pitched delivery and got rid off the England skipper.

Root continued to work at his own pace, but just when he was closing in on yet another Test ton, Wagner delivered the goods for his side. Another short pitched ball and Root miscued it straight to mid wicket and departed for a well compiled 95 as the NZ seamer opened the floodgates for wickets.

Ben Foakes took England closer to the victory line, but at the important juncture, he threw his wicket away as New Zealand got closer and closer to a famous win.

With 5 runs needed for the win, England had their hopes rested on the shoulders of Jack Leach and James Anderson. But this time, there was no joy for the England side as they sucummed to their second defeat under Ben Stokes. Anderson missed a flick and the keeper took a simple catch behind the stumps to end a thrilling contest.

After getting drubbed in the first Test and the first innings of this Test match, Wagner turned out to be the real match-winner, picking up 4 for 62.

Brief Score

England 2nd innings: 256-10 (74.2)

Joe Root 95 (113), Ben Foakes 35 (57);

Neil Wagner 4-62 (15.2), Tim Southee 3-45 (20.1)