First Test Match

ENGLAND v NEW ZEALAND 1954-55

Toss: England. Test debuts: New Zealand - A.A.Colquhoun, S.N.McGregor, L.Watt.

In all respects excepting some sound left-handed batting by Sutcliffe, England were clearly superior. Although the conditions were not particularly favourable to bowlers, Hutton, winning the toss, sent in New Zealand who adopted a negative policy. Rabone, their captain, set the example by occupying three hours over 18. He persuaded Sutcliffe to copy him, but when the supply of partners was running short Sutcliffe adopted a more natural game. Playing through the innings of four and a half hours, Sutcliffe was last out having hit Bailey, Appleyard and Wardle each for 6.

England began their reply next day and with Graveney again in sparkling form they passed 50 in thirty-five minutes, whereupon Reid, MacGibbon and Cave bowled short of a length to a defensive field. England went ahead in two and a half hours. When bad light stopped play they held an advantage of 84 but rain set in and nothing more could be done before Wednesday.

Hutton declared first thing and this time Sutcliffe opened with Rabone, the score at lunch being 67 for one. Immediately after the interval a brilliant return by May from long-leg ran out Sutcliffe and between them Tyson, Appleyard and Wardle soon accounted for the remainder. There was a break of half an hour before England began their task of scoring 49 as Rabone claimed ten minutes between innings as well as twenty minutes for tea, but the quibble made no difference, England never being pressed for time.

© John Wisden & Co