New Zealand pacemen strike twice to leave Australia 67-2
December 26, 2019 09:30 AM NPT
FILE PHOTO: Cricket - New Zealand v England - First Test - Bay Oval, Mount Maunganui, New Zealand - November 25, 2019 New Zealand's Kane Williamson in action REUTERS/Ross Setford
MELBOURNE, Dec 26: New Zealand’s pacemen struck twice in the first session at the Boxing Day test on Thursday, removing both Australia’s openers to leave the home side at 67 for two at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.
Recalled paceman Trent Boult grabbed the first wicket with the fourth delivery of the match, bowling Joe Burns for a first-ball duck with a searing inswinger after New Zealand captain Kane Williamson won the toss and sent Australia in to bat.
Seamer Neil Wagner broke a 60-run partnership to have David Warner nick into the slips where Tim Southee dived to his right to take a sharp one-handed catch.
Number three batsman Marnus Labuschagne was 23 not out, with Steve Smith on one run from 19 balls.
New Zealand made two changes, with fit-again Boult replacing the injured Lockie Ferguson and wicketkeeper-batsman Tom Blundell coming in for the dropped opener Jeet Raval.
Australia recalled paceman James Pattinson to replace the injured Josh Hazlewood.
Australia lead the three-match series 1-0 after winning the opener in Perth by 296 runs.
The home side’s selectors said they had added uncapped spinner Mitchell Swepson to the squad for the third and final test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
The Queensland legspinner’s call-up gives selectors the option to pick a dual spin attack on a wicket that usually offers ample turn.
Swepson, who replaces veteran seamer Peter Siddle in the squad, has 12 wickets at an average of 26.58 in six Sheffield Shield games this season.