After captain Ben Stokes said that his team had played “the ideal game” to take a 1-0 series lead, England announced an unchanged lineup for the second and final Test against New Zealand, which will begin on Friday in Wellington. On Mount Maunganui, the tourists won the first Test handily by 267 runs, with the 40-year-old fast bowler James Anderson taking seven wickets. With the haul, he dethroned Australia skipper Pat Cummins and returned to the top of the Test bowling world rankings for the sixth time in his career and the first time since 2018.
After recording 7-54 in the encounter at the Bay Oval as part of a formidable pace combination with Stuart Broad and Ollie Robinson, Anderson’s return to the top did not surprise Stokes.
To be honest, I don’t think it will bother him all that much. He will simply continue doing what he is doing, Stokes said on Thursday.
“Like many of the other men in the locker room, I think Jimmy has been among the best in the world for a very, very long time.
The captain remarked, “Having someone like him along with Broady and Robbo is a genuine thrill to be able to lead at the moment. “I know I can toss the ball to him when I need a wicket.”
For the Basin Reserve match, Stokes said he had thought about resting one or more of his front-line seamers, but all three told him on Thursday that they felt rested and prepared to play.
He made a suggestion that the grassy pitch’s potential for sideways movement may have served as inspiration for the trio.
The balance between selecting your strongest 11 and ensuring that your bowlers are fully prepared is delicate, according to Stokes.
Once they gave the all-clear, it was rather simple to identify the crew.
The victory last week was England’s first on New Zealand soil in 15 years and their 10th in their last 11 Test matches under Stokes.
Stokes was pleased with his team’s accomplishment because they stuck to a strategy that involves applying pressure to New Zealand’s top order while they batted in light-friendly conditions.
We aim to put the other team under pressure when we feel like it, and Stokes stated that’s what we were able to do.
Given that it was a day-night Test match, “I think we performed close enough to the perfect game.”
New Zealand would suffer their first home series loss in six years if they were to lose or tie in Wellington.
Black Caps captain Tim Southee is certain that his squad has the credentials to tie the series, although there has been a forecast calling for rain on each of the opening two days.
In 14 Tests played at the Basin Reserve during the past ten years, they had a solid record with seven victories and just two defeats.
“I think that’s where home advantage comes into play,” he continued. “We have won many games and a few series throughout that time, so we are familiar with these circumstances. reasonably well.”
“England played it excellently last week from a strategic sense, and we had some difficult practises under the lights.
But you shouldn’t think about what transpired because the current Test match is routine.
When asked who will replace seamer Matt Henry, who missed the first Test to attend the birth of his child, Southee refused to say.
Tom Latham, Devon Conway, Kane Williamson, Henry Nicholls, Will Young, Daryl Mitchell, Michael Bracewell, Scott Kuggeleijn, Tim Southee (captain), Matt Henry, Neil Wagner, and Blair Tickner are among the players from New Zealand.
Joe Root, Harry Brook, Ben Stokes (captain), Ben Foakes, Ollie Robinson, Stuart Broad, Jack Leach, and Jimmy Anderson are all members of the England team.
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