Wellington: New Zealand's media were muted in their reaction to their side being bundled out for just 68 runs to give England a 170-run victory in the first Test at Lord's on Sunday, instead turning their focus towards the second match in Leeds. Their second innings score, sparked by Stuart Broad's career-best figures of seven for 44, was New Zealand's ninth-lowest in their 83-year Test history.
Unlike the furore that enveloped the team when they were bundled out for 45 by South Africa in January, however, the outcry on Monday was more restrained. No doubt the fact Brendon McCullum's team had actually competed, if not held a slight advantage for the first three innings before "one hour of madness" on Sunday when Broad ran through the visitors lineup, helped lessen the criticism.
"In a flash, it was gone," Fairfax Media's senior cricket writer Mark Geenty wrote. "New Zealand boldly dared to dream of a rare Test win at Lord's but in the space of one horror hour it became a nightmare. Memories of the Cape Town collapse for 45 in January had almost faded. This pavilion procession revived them as New Zealand slumped to 29-6 at lunch, with Broad taking five of the first six. The question is now, what kind of psychological damage this causes to New Zealand heading into Friday's second and final Test at Leeds."
The New Zealand Herald's Andrew Alderson, however, was slightly more critical.
"If New Zealand's second innings capitulation was a classified ad it might read something like this: 'For sale. 2013 New Zealand second innings at Lord's. Promises much, but runs out of gas in a shade under two hours on the brink of history. Dial 196058 for disappointment'," he wrote.
Alderson, however, agreed the onslaught from Broad and James Anderson, who were the only two bowlers used in the 22.3 overs in the New Zealand's second innings was world class.
"Broad claimed the spoils but Anderson offered as much scrutiny as they swung the ball from a full length anywhere from off to an imaginary fourth stump," Alderson wrote.
"Any international batsman would have found it formidable."
Both reporters, who are following the team in England, however, found some positives from the New Zealand performance, notwithstanding the fourth innings collapse.
"Despite the loss it wasn't a completely hopeless experience for the Black Caps," Geenty wrote. There were positives to cling to, particularly the bowling where Tim Southee had his name etched on the Lord's honours board with his second innings 6-50 to give him 10 wickets for the match. Trent Boult and Wagner were excellent foils as the New Zealand pace attack continued to cause problems for England's batting lineup."
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