New Zealand v Pakistan, 2nd Test, Wellington, 3rd day

Harper's howlers, and a streaker stops play

Plays of the Day on day three of the Wellington Test between New Zealand and Pakistan

Andrew Fernando

January 17, 2011

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Reece Young took four catches, including that of Umar Gul, New Zealand Cricket XI v Pakistanis, tour match, 2nd day, Whangarei, January 3, 2011
Reece Young looked good with the bat and behind the stumps but needs to work on his appealing © Getty Images
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Nude sprint of the day
Perhaps it is because five-day cricket is a relatively sedate pursuit or because Tests attract a more refined breed of spectator, but streaking is a rare occurrence in the longest form of the game. A young Wellingtonian, though, proved that even cricket's proudest incarnation wasn't above being besoiled by the naked human form with a somewhat commendable streaking effort just after lunch. Sidestepping the guard at fine leg, the poorly covered intruder sprinted onto the field, donning nought but a cape and wielding a plastic sword. He circumvented the pitch as he ran towards the opposite end of the ground, shaking his sword at the security personnel who were closing in. He ran into trouble at long-on though, as he was cornered by three guards who tackled him to the ground, forcibly covered his genitals and escorted him out of sight.

Shot of the day
Misbah-ul-haq played a number of attractive strokes throughout the day, but perhaps the best of the lot was his gorgeous cover drive off the first ball of the evening session. Tim Southee pitched full and wide, and Misbah went down on one knee to caress it languidly through the infield for four.

Miser of the day
In a match where spinners have been resigned to bowling into the wind, Vettori produced the meanest spell from the scoreboard end, just before tea. He began with five consecutive maidens to Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan, bowling an immaculate line to his packed off-side field, before the batsmen managed to break free with a spate of ones and twos. By the break his eight-over spell had cost 12 runs.

Howler of the day
Given the number of umpiring howlers so far, the Test at the Basin Reserve has been a painful exercise in proving just how much Test cricket needs the UDRS. Seven bad umpiring decisions had been made by stumps at day three and perhaps the cruelest of them was Younis Khan's dismissal on the stroke of tea. Younis came forward to a Vettori arm ball and failed to get bat on ball. The ball struck his pad and popped up to Jesse Ryder at short-leg, and almost before Younis had had time to look up, he had been given out. Pakistan, who had cruised for most of the day towards a handy first-innings lead, lost their remaining six wickets for 90 runs.

Lacklustre appeal of the day
Reece Young may have been impressive with the bat and tidy with the gloves, but his appealing behind the stumps may not be at the level required for an international wicketkeeper. He failed to join in with his teammates after Umar Taufeeq had edged one behind yesterday and his half-hearted effort when Tim Southee demanded Adnan Akmal's wicket after tea was a dead giveaway that the batsman had not touched it. Perhaps the New Zealand coaching staff could get him onto videos of Kumar Sangakkara or Kamran Akmal to show him what he should be doing.

Andrew Fernando writes for The Pigeon and blogs here

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