Boult and Nicholls excel but it's another disappointing Test for Cook & Co... PLAYER RATINGS

England crumbled under the lights at Eden Park, slipping to a miserable innings defeat in the first Test against New Zealand. The Cricketer rates the individual performances of both sets of players…


England crumbled under the lights at Eden Park, slipping to a miserable innings defeat in the first Test against New Zealand.

The Cricketer rates the individual performances of both sets of players…


Jeet Raval (3): Nicked off very early on and never got the chance to make amends. 2

Tom Latham (26): Anchored the innings well with Williamson to prevent England from getting even the slightest hint of a collapse. Gave Broad his 400th Test wicket with a casual flick to leg. 5

Kane Williamson (102): Day one was Kane Day. Has there ever been a more inspired decision than to insert an opposition under blue skies? A catch of the year contender followed. Then, a century oozing class - cool and calculated, driving England into the ground. Excellent. 9

Ross Taylor (20): An uncomfortable innings came to an end with an ugly-looking pull, which lobbed up to midwicket. Still, he almost made half of the runs of the entire England side first time around. 4

Henry Nicholls (145*): Showed the qualities of a real Test star of the future. Happy to tough it early on before loosening the restraints. His innings left the game unsalvageable for England, as hard as Mother Nature might have tried. 9


Henry Nicholls made a century

BJ Watling (31): On his return from injury, the wicketkeeper looked like he’d never been away. Good with the bat, dependable with the gloves and four dismissals to go with his runs. 7

Colin de Grandhomme (29 & DNB/0-40): A quiet Test for the allrounder, who didn’t get a chance to bowl until an hour into the England second innings. 5

Todd Astle (18 & DNB/3-39): Still no replacement for Mitchell Santner with the bat but showed with the ball in the second innings just how disruptive he can be. 6.5

Tim Southee (25 & 4-25/1-86): The junior partner in crime as England imploded in the first session. The right lines and lengths were all that was needed and the right lines and lengths is what Southee bowled. A few quick runs with the bat for good measure. 8

Neil Wagner (9 & DNB/3-77): After doing very little for the first four days of this game, his battle with Ben Stokes on the final afternoon was fascinating. And in winning that battle, and by subsequently removing Chris Woakes, he ensured there’d be no late salvation for the tourists. 7.5

Trent Boult (DNB & 6-32/3-67): An exhibition of swing bowling laid the foundation for England to repeatedly shoot themselves in the foot on day one. The batting can take some criticism but without Boult’s incisive spell, they might have got away with it. 9.5


Trent Boult was on fine form


Alastair Cook (5/2): The opener’s position has been at once questioned and set in concrete for months. Here, he was twice caught behind, leaden-footed, trapped on the crease as if in a panic. Runs have to come in Christchurch. 1

Mark Stoneman (11/55): A second-innings half-century again showed promise but Stoneman cannot seemingly follow through with a big score. 5

Joe Root (0/51 & 1-13): Up at No. 3 somewhat reluctantly, Root played a terrible loose shot so early in his innings to lose his wicket first time around. Beaten and bruised by Boult late on day four, he found himself dismissed with stumps in sight again - as happened during the Ashes. 5

Dawid Malan (2/23): He will survive a pair of failures in Auckland but Malan was another England batsman to relinquish his wicket too easily. 3.5

Ben Stokes (0/66): In as a specialist batsman, Stokes was so late on a Boult delivery that took his off peg in the first innings that he needn’t have bothered even turning up. Much improved in the second innings but fell at a crucial moment to a loose shot. 5


Ben Stokes hit a second-innings half-century

Jonny Bairstow (0/26): Not able to hang around in either innings. Glovework was tidy enough but England could have done with big runs. 4

Moeen Ali (0/28 & 0-59): Bizarre dismissal on day one, playing over a full toss. Bowled without any form of potency. 2.5

Chris Woakes (5/52 & 0-107): Another to show signs of staying power in the second innings when it was really too late. With the ball, he continued to find life overseas tough, as his 60-plus Test average abroad now illustrates in high definition. 4.5

Craig Overton (33*/3 & 1-70): The only Englishman to use a forward stride to combat the swinging ball. Bowled with effort but minimal reward. 5

Stuart Broad (0/1* & 3-78): The Test that included his 400th wicket will go down as one of his least memorable. 5

Jimmy Anderson (1/1 & 3-87): Struggled for movement in the air but found a bit off the pitch. Worked very hard for his three wickets, tieing New Zealand down for long periods. 5


Report: Fifth-day mettle doesn't cover England's ills

Reaction: Root says "no excuses" after humbling in Auckland





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