Napier: Zimbabwe suffered their biggest test defeat at the hands of New Zealand who bowled out them twice in a day. Chris Martin named ‘man of the match’ for taking 7 wickets.
The New Zealand team with the trophy © Getty Images
New Zealand 1st Innings: 495/7d in 123.4 overs.
Zimbabwe 1st Innings: 51/10 in 28.5 overs.
Zimbabwe 2nd Innings: 143/10 in 48.3 overs.
Courtesy: New Zealand Cricket
A maiden test century by BJ Watling was an unlikely prelude to a bowlers’ benefit that left New Zealand with an overwhelming win in the off-test against Zimbabwe.
New Zealand stamped their total authority on the match on the third day after new wicketkeeper Watling scored 102 not out in their first innings of 495 for seven declared after resuming on 392 for five.
Zimbabwe’s response was poor to say the least, the tourists making a record low 51 and 143 as the hosts enjoyed victory by a margin of an innings and 301 runs, the largest in the country’s history.
Veteran fast bowler Chris Martin caused the major damage, knocking the top off the tourists’ second innings before mopping up the tail and ending with career-best figures of six for 26 in 8.3 overs.
Added to the two cheap wickets he took in the first innings which gave him a match analysis of eight for 31, 37-year-old man-of-the-match Martin lifted his career haul through 65 tests to 218 wickets, third equal on New Zealand’s all-time list alongside Chris Cairns.
Once Watling’s good work with the bat was done his bowlers ruled the roost on a surface offering consistent pace and bounce for the batsmen but Zimbabwe were found seriously wanting in their first test appearance on foreign soil after an almost six-year self-imposed exile.
Their batsmen failed to cope as their technical deficiencies were fully exposed by a persistent, accurate and demanding New Zealand bowling attack.
At one stage the tourists were devoid of any fight as they slumped to 12 for five in their second innings before showing they had at least learned some lessons as Regis Chakabva and Graeme Cremer combined for a stand of 63 in 82 minutes before Cremer holed out for 26 off part-time spinner Kane Williamson.
Chakabva proved there were no terrors in the pitch as he scored a career best 63 to delay the inevitable, playing intelligently and working the ball into the gaps during a stay of 161 minutes.
Doug Bracewell collected three for 26 to assist Martin and end with a match haul of five for five for 38.
Zimbabwe’s first innings capitulation occupied only 28.5 overs as a succession of batsmen were undone sparring outside the off stumps.
After the inswing of Martin accounted for Tino Mawoyo and Forster Mutizwa, who were both bowled, his seam bowling colleagues cleaned up big time as only Malcolm Waller, with 23, offered any resistance.
A series of poor strokes was punished by some excellent catching behind the wicket, with Dean Brownlie pouching four offerings at third slip and Martin Guptill another at second slip.
Zimbabwe’s previous test low of 54 was scored against South Africa at Cape Town in 2005.
After most of the second day was lost to rain, today’s extended first session set the tone as Watling, resuming on 52, became just the fifth New Zealand wicketkeeper to score a test century.
In his seventh test, and his first entrusted with the gloves, 26-year-old Watling had a nervy start in the second over when he successfully asked for a review of umpire Enamul Hoque-Moni’s decision to uphold a leg before wicket appeal. Replays showed seamer Shingirai Masakadza had delivered a no ball.
After that he made every post a winner with an unbeaten 102, joining Warren Lees, Ian Smith, Adam Parore and BrendonMcCullum as the only New Zealand wicketkeepers to top three figures in the test arena.
He was in excellent touch, peppering the boundary regular to all points of the compass, and displayed both the composure and technique required as he and Tim Southee grabbed the initiative as they scored at a brisk pace as 74 runs were added in quick time for the seventh wicket.
Southee freed his arms in a clean-hitting exhibition which netted him 44 off 39 balls, with six fours and one six, before holing out but Trent Boult hung around long enough to see Watling to his century in the last over before drinks.
Dropped in the slips on 91, Watling wasted little time in the 90s, pulling Kyle Jarvis for four to go to 98 then reaching his hundred when he scampered through for two after a push forward of point.
He had cause to hold his breath, though, as television replays were required to show his sprawling dive into the crease just beat a throw from the outfield before wicketkeeper Tatenda Taibu removed the bails.
The BLACKCAPS were without captain Ross Taylor, who watched all the action from the grandstand after suffering a grade two tear to his right calf muscle which forced him to retire hurt on 122 early on the second day.
Taylor is expected to be sidelined for up to a month, and the leadership duties for this test fell to McCullum, who got an easy ride as his bowlers totally dominated the tourists.
Result: New Zealand won by an innings and 301 runs.
Man Of The Match: Chris Martin (New Zealand).