Rory Burns hit a gutsy century to help England recover from a collapse on the fourth day of the first Test against New Zealand at Lord’s on Saturday.
England was in danger of following-on but Burns’ 132 meant it avoided the embarrassment, although a total of 275 was still 103 adrift of New Zealand’s score of 378 that featured debutant opener Devon Conway’s remarkable 200. The Kiwis were 34 for no loss at the time of going to the press.
Veteran paceman Tim Southee led New Zealand’s attack with six for 43 in 25.1 overs to secure yet another place on the Lord’s honours board after his 10-wicket haul in 2013.
But the Black Caps would have been in an even stronger position had they not reprieved Burns on 77 and 88. Burns was still nine runs shy of his third Test century when he was joined by last-man James Anderson. Their entertaining stand of 52 delayed the tea interval before Southee had Burns caught behind to end a stay of nearly eight hours. The opener faced 297 balls and hit 16 fours and a six.
England captain Joe Root was dismissed off the first ball of the day when he edged Kyle Jamieson to Ross Taylor at slip. England lost three wickets for no runs in 21 balls during a middle-order slump.
Ollie Robinson gave Burns valuable support during a seventh-wicket stand of 63. But the new ball brought about his downfall for 42, when he top-edged a hook off Southee to deep fine-leg.