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New Zealand v Australia 2024

Watch highlights, NZ v AUS, 1st Test Day 1: Cameron Green’s second Test hundred leads Australia’s fightback on green top in Wellington

Cameron Green of Australia acknowledges the crowd as he leaves the field at the end of play during day one of the First Test in the series between New Zealand and Australia at Basin Reserve on February 29, 2024 in Wellington, New Zealand.
by Wisden Staff 3 minute read

NZ vs AUS 1st Test highlights: Cameron Green scored a counter-attacking unbeaten 103 to help Australia surge back into the game after they briefly found themselves reeling at 89-4 on a topsy-turvy opening day of the first New Zealand-Australia Test in Wellington.

Given the overcast conditions and green layer of grass on the pitch, New Zealand captain Tim Southee sent Australia to bat first. Australia openers Usman Khawaja and Steve Smith survived the first 90 minutes without hiccups, putting on a 61-run opening stand. In the 25th over, Matt Henry had Smith brilliantly caught by wicketkeeper Tom Blundell for a 71-ball 31 to give the hosts their first breakthrough.

The dismissal triggered a collapse. Marnus Labuschagne edged Scott Kuggeleijn to Daryl Mitchell at second slip for one; Henry produced a vicious inswinger to shatter Khawaja’s stumps for a 118-ball 33; and Travis Head flashed at a wide one from youngster Will O’Rourke, feathering the ball to Blundell for one, leaving Australia teetering at 89-4.

In a period of consolidation, Mitchell Marsh and Cameron Green formed a 67-run stand to resurrect Australia’s innings before the former miscued a pull shot off Henry to get caught behind for a breezy 40, comprising six fours and a six. Australia slipped to 156-5.

The onus was on Green to fulcrum Australia’s batting from there on as the tourists’ lower order and tail couldn’t show resistance. Green switched gears as wickets kept tumbling at the other end and raced from 91 to 103 with three fours off O’Rourke in the 85th over to bring up his second Test century. His 155-ball 103 included 16 fours as Australia finished day one at 279-9.

Henry proved to be wrecker-in-chief for the home side, taking 4-43 from his 20 overs. Fellow pacers O’Rourke and Kuggeleijn, playing their respective second Test matches, scalped twice each to complement Henry’s effort.

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