Published: Tue, December 03, 2019
Sport | By Kayla Schwartz

Williamson hails 'hard work' to save Test, seal England series win

Williamson hails 'hard work' to save Test, seal England series win

The New Zealand skipper was on 39 when wicketkeeper Pope put down a regulation offering off the gloves, much to bowler Ben Stokes annoyance, and on 62 Denly inexplicably dropped an even easier chance. It was perhaps the worst drop in the history of cricket as Joe Denly made a mess of that catch.

That allowed NZ captain Kane Williamson the opportunity to score his 21st test century and batting-partner Ross Taylor followed him soon after with his 19th ton in tests. In the process, he ended up giving a reprieve to none other than New Zealand captain Kane Williamson.

Aiming to bowl New Zealand out in Hamilton and chase a small target before forecasted rain arrived in the afternoon, England knew they couldn't squander any opportunities.

The England pacer drew Williamson into a poor shot.

Archer just could not believe that Denly had failed to hold on to the catch and started laughing in disbelief while rest of the England players held their heads in their hands.

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With Williamson mis-timing the ball gently in the air, it was the simplest of chances for Denly.

But Denly let it fall through his hands, also being unable to pouch it on the second attempt as it fell softly to the ground - horrifying Archer, who had already wheeled away in glee.

The hosts hold a 110-run lead and barring an almighty collapse and a quick run chase, or a fearless declaration and a batting capitulation, the series will go to New Zealand following their innings win in the first Test. "It's very frustrating and I'm sure Joe will not hear the end of it for a long while", added Root Williamson had another life when he should have been run out on 97 but Sam Curran's shy at the bowler's end from mid-off was so far wide of the stumps that the batsmen had time to return for a second run.

With the weather denying England a second turn at bat, it ensured New Zealand's series win after their innings victory in the first Test, and improved their record to eight wins, a draw and one loss (to South Africa) in their past 10 series.

The squad will be hopeful to have Trent Boult and Colin de Grandhomme fit again after the duo missed the second test through injuries.

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