Australia v New Zealand, 2nd Test, Hobart, 3rd day December 11, 2011

Hughes, Warner ride luck in chase


Australia 136 and 0 for 72 (Warner 47*, Hughes 20*) need 169 runs to beat New Zealand 150 and 226 (Taylor 56, Lyon 3-25, Pattinson 3-54 , Siddle 3-66)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details

A fortunate Phillip Hughes and an enterprising David Warner guided Australia to 0 for 72 in pursuit of 241 following a tense start to the fourth innings in Hobart. Rain arrived during the tea break and could not be shaken, meaning the duo will resume on the fourth morning to confront the session in which 19 wickets have fallen over the first three days. New Zealand's bowlers will consider themselves in with a chance of disturbing the chase, particularly against the nervy Hughes.

He had gloved a catch down the legside off the bowling of Chris Martin when he was on 0, but the visitors' appeal was muted and no DRS referral was requested. Batting uncomfortably for his Test place, Hughes survived in the company of Warner, who played more confidently though he too had a slice of luck.

They were batting after rain delayed the post-lunch resumption, having watched New Zealand slip from 3 for 139 overnight to 9 for 203. New Zealand's lead was given an unlikely top-up by the last pair of debutant Trent Boult and Martin. Boult struck four boundaries and Martin survived nine balls before his partner swung Nathan Lyon into the deep.

Lyon's three wickets meant he had wrapped up the New Zealand tail for the third time in four innings, but it was Peter Siddle and James Pattinson who did the bulk of the heavy lifting for the hosts. Siddle struck in the first over of the morning and persisted admirably throughout, while Pattinson's swing and speed accounted for Ross Taylor, whose 56 was the highest score of the match, and the dogged Dean Brownlie.

Ricky Ponting was late to the ground on the third morning, having received the news that his grandmother had died overnight. His team-mates wore black armbands onto the field in recognition, and were soon patting Ponting on the back as he clung onto a sharp chance in the day's first over. Siddle moved the ball fractionally away from a perfect length, and Kane Williamson's feet did not move swiftly enough to avoid the edge.

Brownlie had been Australia's chief batting tormentor in this series, and for 32 runs he hung tough . The ball continued to seam and swing, Siddle and Pattinson persistent and pacey, but in the absence of a wicket Michael Clarke was forced to make a change. Mitchell Starc could not improve on his first-day bowling at the Gabba, but his short ball disrupted the visitors' progress by clouting Brownlie on the left wrist as he ducked. Magic spray was called for, and Brownlie's touch was affected.

Taylor watched it all from the other end, and in the next over he did not get far enough forward to negate Pattinson's away swing. As in Brisbane, he edged, offering a chance that Clarke held adeptly to his right. Pattinson with in fine rhythm in his second spell of the session, and a bouncer grazed Brownlie's ginger left glove on the way through to Brad Haddin.

Reece Young fell victim to Siddle's nip-backer, reward for a wonderfully relentless display, and Tim Southee was unable to contain himself against Lyon. The first ball sailed over Michael Hussey's head for six, the second skimmed beyond mid-off for four, and the third picked out Hussey in a foolhardy attempt to repeat the first. Doug Bracewell swung rashly two balls later to be bowled.

Martin was very nearly lbw to Lyon before he had scored, but evaded the appeal and allowed Boult to swing for the boundary. He did so with success until he picked out Hussey in much the same manner as Southee had done.

Hughes faced up to the first over of Australia's chase and played Martin solidly enough, but in the third he should have been out. He looked a guilty man as New Zealand chose not to refer to technology for proof of a gloved catch, and went on to capitalise on their oversight.

Warner was the more positive of the duo, eluding a trio of lbw appeals that did not quite meet the precise criteria for a dismissal, and once snicking Southee past his leg stump to the fine leg fence. He also managed a handful of more authoritative boundaries, and gave Hughes an embrace of solidarity as they walked off for the interval, and ultimately the day.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Amar on December 12, 2011, 3:29 GMT

    @RandyOZ: Yeah, I did just see the new and improved Aussies crumble to defeat to the lowly new zealanders. Maybe the new and improved Aussies can compete with Bangladesh and WI.

  • Dummy4 on December 11, 2011, 23:51 GMT

    The only time England will worry about the Aussies in the near future,is if Warney and McGrath come out from their rest homes,as they are still better than this lot playing now.By the way the rumour is Johnsons is currently out of action ,because hes suffering from shock at actually keeping a delivery somewhere within 100 yards of the pitch.By the way,lads is it the new and improved Australia who got skittled for 130 in the first innings,and only got that,because Siddle showed yet again that hes a better batsman than bowler.

  • Srinivas on December 11, 2011, 23:15 GMT

    Gosh! Phil Hughes gone without adding anything to his over-night score. Is that his end? I guess!

  • Marty on December 11, 2011, 22:50 GMT

    AUstralia should win from hee but nothing is certain. One thing is certain though is that Starc is not ready for Test cricket. A win may help him avoid close scrutiny but I am afreaid there are too many in line to have him anywhere near Melbourne on Boxing Day. Why Copeland didn't play on this wicket still astounds me.

  • Randolph on December 11, 2011, 22:20 GMT

    @mak102480 - you're lack of cricketing knowledge is gaping to say the least. It's so good to see all the poms and Indians showing their signs of worry at the new and improved Australia. I know our dominance is already shining bright, but there's no need to be so worried, afterall you guys are used to it! @HatsforBats, yeh don't worry mate we all know landl47 only ever comments when there is a bad session by Aus. That's why we've only heard from him once or twice lately. Similar to the period 1987-2007 where his lips were firmly shut!

  • Nitin on December 11, 2011, 20:54 GMT

    Win loss ratio? Cummon people give me a break. China is never judged by how was it in 1945! I am an Indian fan and I agree that we were not a good team years ago..but now things have changed...just check the records of Ind vs Aus since 1996(Border gavaskar trophy) 28 matches, India leading 12-10 with 6 draws. And that was the period when aussies were the no-1 team. But we are better than you in last 15 years, the year since I started watching cricket as a 7 year old! Last 2 series in India, ozies are trailing 4-0 in 6 matches, while we have won matches the last two times we visited you.Period.

  • Dale on December 11, 2011, 20:47 GMT

    Owell as a Kiwi, at least I can be proud of our bowlers who punched above their weight in this series. I mean we are lead by guy whose 37, and then a couple of newbies - the one who has let us down is Tim Southee, he hasn't performed at all, his batting is careless and his bowling is sub-par on bowler friendly wickets. The batting is same old same old, we missed Vettori's batting in this test. Aussie's still have problems with the bat this is not a strong bowling attack and they have troubled them. I don't India have a bowling attack at the moment that will trouble them either (unless Zaheer Khan can get back to his best), but they had better improve their batting before they face England again.

  • stuart on December 11, 2011, 20:30 GMT

    Jonesey 2 good to have you back.It goes ominously quiet on here when Aus do bad.Aus will dominate for the next 10 years? Guess we will see won't we.Good to have you back fella.If Kiwis win will we hear from you then or mysteriously go quiet as per usual when your team does badly.Or as we call it every other day

  • Amar on December 11, 2011, 20:24 GMT

    I think if proper DRS rules were in place - i.e. 3rd umpire calls for it - Hughes would have been out for a zero. And with a wicket that early and Ponting and the likes who can't play swing bowling anymore, Australia would have been 4 or 5 down by now. And they would have been on their way to a 100 run loss.

  • kieran on December 11, 2011, 20:18 GMT

    @ landl47; it's funny isn't it, like how 06/07 never happened for the poms. If the Indians beat Eng in Ind I guess thier last summer never happened either.

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