First Test Match

New Zealand v India

At Dunedin, February 15, 16, 17, 19, 20. India won by five wickets.

Correct, methodical and attractive batting by Dowling gave New Zealand a fine start on a pitch of easy pace. At one stage the score was 200 for the loss of Murray. Congdon, less convincing, helped Dowling in a second-wicket stand of 155, a New Zealand record against India, but the score at close of play was 246 for five, and next day New Zealand had to thank Burgess (50 in his first Test innings) and Alabaster, who helped Burgess to add 69 for the ninth wicket, for a total of 350.

In the afternoon the Indian batsmen took all manner of risks, and New Zealand, dropping eight catches in two hours, lost a great chance of winning a commanding position. Every Indian batsman reached double figures and there was a splendid last-wicket stand between Desai and Bedi which yielded 57, a record for these countries. Desai, whose jaw was fractured when he was struck by a ball from Motz at the start of his innings, showed great courage.

India led by only nine, but New Zealand had to struggle for runs. Murray scored an attractive fifty, Burgess again batted well, and Motz hit 22 in five balls from Prasanna, but the side could total only 208 and by the end of the fourth day India were 161 for three, with Wadekar completing a splendid double.

There was a delay of an hour on the final morning through rain, and New Zealand fought hard, with Alabaster bowling particularly well, but soon after lunch India had won a Test beyond their own boundaries for the first time.

© John Wisden & Co