BlackCaps follow on, Guptill gone
Sun, 26 Aug 2012 10:01a.m.
Offspinner Ravichandran Ashwin's six-wicket haul put India in control of the first test against New Zealand, leading by 238 runs at the end of the third day and needing nine more wickets to go 1-0 up in the two-match series.
Ashwin claimed a career-best 6-31 as New Zealand was bowled out for 159 and asked to follow-on after India had totaled 438 in its first innings.
Ashwin took three wickets in the first session to surpass his previous best of 6-47 against West Indies in his debut test at New Delhi last year.
New Zealand was 41-1 in its second innings when bad light and showers forced an early tea break and a subsequent calling off of play with only 37.3 overs of play possible. Brendon McCullum was 16 not out and Kane Williamson unbeaten on 3 at the close.
"There is some bounce in the wicket and it has started turning more," India left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha said. "In the first (innings) it was turning from the fourth stump, now it's turning from the middle stump line." Ojha, who supported Ashwin well to take 3-25 in the first innings and dismissed opener Martin Guptill in the second innings, said things were falling in place for the Indian team.
"As a spinner, you've to play with the patience of batsmen. But when it's turning, it's a bonus for you," he said.
Earlier in the morning, New Zealand's batting line-up folded in only one session.
Left-hander James Franklin remained not out on 43 off 142 balls with a four and a six, but was left helpless as he watched wickets fall regularly from the non-striker's end.
"There were always going to be some balls that would spin past the bat, but I was just trying not to worry about that but focus on the ball that was coming down at me each time," Franklin said. "We started pretty well in the second innings, and we've just got to continue that over a very long period tomorrow and into day five."
New Zealand failed to show any fight, even before Ashwin had been put into the attack.
Overnight batsman Kruger van Wyk departed on the 10th delivery of the day when he shaped up to play a pull shot off pace bowler Umesh Yadav but was trapped leg before wicket without scoring.
Doug Bracewell looked comfortable in the middle and had scored 17 off 25 balls before he left his crease to a delivery from Pragyan Ojha that was well outside off stump, allowing Dhoni to make an easy stumping.
Ashwin was the last bowler to be introduced into the attack Saturday morning from the specialist bowlers despite being the most successful on Friday, but he soon took a low return catch to dismiss Jeetan Patel for 10.
Ashwin completed his five-wicket haul when he had Trent Boult caught by Gautam Gambhir at short-leg, and then bowled No. 11 Chris Martin with the very next delivery.
The second test will be held in Bangalore from Aug. 31. The test series will be followed by two Twenty20 games.
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