Taylor misses ton; NZ push on

Ross Taylor acknowledges reaching his half-century. Photos Getty
Ross Taylor acknowledges reaching his half-century. Photos Getty
New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor today fell seven short of joining his captain Kane Williamson and the late Martin Crowe at the top of New Zealand’s test century-makers.

Taylor was out for 93, leg before wicket to West Indian fast bowler Kemar Roach late in the middle session on the second day of the opening test at the Basin Reserve.

Ross Taylor avoids a bouncer from West Indies bowler Shannon Gabriel.
Ross Taylor avoids a bouncer from West Indies bowler Shannon Gabriel.

It would have been Taylor’s 17th hundred, and his fourth against the West Indies, after making one in each test of the 2013 tour of New Zealand.

Umpire Rod Tucker gave Taylor not out to an lbw appeal, but the West Indies referred the appeal and TV showed Taylor, pushing forward, would have been out.

He was already walking back towards the pavilion before the finger was raised.

His dismissal ended a 127-run stand for the fourth wicket with lefthander Henry Nicholls.

Taylor also passed 10,000 first class runs during the innings and 14,000 runs in all international cricket for New Zealand.

By tea, New Zealand had pushed the lunchtime lead from 47 to 133 and sat at 267 for four, with Nicholls, having completed his fifth test half-century, on 66 and Mitchell Santner on 12.

Taylor’s innings was laced with snappy cuts, vigorous back foot shots to the leg side and pleasing drives and there seemed an inevitability about the century until Roach struck for his third wicket of the innings.

He got his runs off 160 balls with 10 fours. Nicholls played his part in keeping the foot on the West Indies.

The Canterbury lefthander was off the mark whipping a four to fine leg first ball, off Roach and was generally assertive in his batting.

Nicholls did have a big stroke of luck to his first ball after lunch, edging a catch to the wicketkeeper off Jason Holder, only to find the bowler had overstepped the mark. Then on 24, he made the best of his letoff.

The West Indies were guilty of letting the game slip during the first session when they were still very much in the contest. They appeared to have given up the challenge too early.

They picked up one wicket in each of the first two sessions, opener Jeet Raval departing before lunch, caught behind off Roach’s first ball of the day.

At tea, the stocky Roach had taken three for 63 and Holder one for 47.

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