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regular-article-logo Saturday, 20 July 2024

Test series: New Zealand get blown away by Harry Brook storm

Brook’s score is already his highest in Tests, beating his 153 against Pakistan in December, and it is his fourth century in his last five Tests

Our Bureau Wellington Published 25.02.23, 04:39 AM
England’s Harry Brook during his unbeaten 184 on Day I of the second Test against New Zealand in Wellington on Friday.

England’s Harry Brook during his unbeaten 184 on Day I of the second Test against New Zealand in Wellington on Friday. Getty Images

Only 65 overs of play were possible on Friday, the first day of the second New Zealand-England Test at Basin Reserve, before rain interrupted. But before the rain, the Harry Brook storm blew away the Black Caps.

England, who were 21/3 in the morning, closed the day at 315/3, with Brook and Joe Root sharing an unbroken 294-run partnership for the fourth wicket. Both the Yorkshiremen got centuries, but in contrasting manners.

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While Brook, 24, batted at a strike rate of 108.87 to remain not out on 184 off just 169 balls, Root’s scoring rate was almost half of that at 55.49 as he finished the day on 101 not out off 182 balls. With 24 fours and five sixes, Brook shook New Zealand. The hosts must have thanked the rain, without which the right-handed batter perhaps would have bullied the home side into embarrassment.

Not that he can’t continue doing that on the second day, after smashing a few records on the first day.

Brook’s score is already his highest in Tests, beating his 153 against Pakistan in December, and it is his fourth century in his last five Tests. He also has three half-centuries and now has 807 runs from only nine Test innings, more than any other player in the history of Test cricket at that point in their careers.

His score is also the highest by an England batsman in Wellington.

For Brook, who his captain Ben Stokes believes is on the path to be a “global superstar”, it was batting as usual.

“It was just the usual mindset,” Brook told BT Sport after the day’s play. “Like I’ve said plenty of times, I look to put pressure on the bowler and be as positive as possible.

“I did change a few little things, but the more positive you are generally the more you get away with. I was trying to be as positive as possible.”

Brook, by the way, will be turning out for Sunrisers Hyderabad in his maiden IPL stint in a little more than a month’s time. How much did Sunrisers get him for at the auction? Rs 13.25 crore. And now you know why they spent so much on him.

Written with inputs from Reuters

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