BJ Watling majestic century leads New Zealand into lead at the end of day 3

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Picture Courtsey: Reuters

Thanks to majestic century by BJ Watling and half-century by Colin de Grandhomme has led New Zealand turnaround at the end of day 3 against England played at Mount Maunganui on Saturday.

Starting on the overnight score of 144 for 4, Henry Nicholls and BJ Watling showed great resolve with their defensive making the batting look easy. Joe Root got the big breakthrough dismissing Henry Nicholls for well-made 41. Nicholls and Watling added 70 runs for the 5th wicket. Colin de Grandhomme looked positive with stroke play putting the bad balls away. At lunch, New Zealand were 224 for 5.

In the 2nd session, BJ Watling played with solid technique while Colin de Grandhomme frustrated the England bowling line with good stroke play making life tough for the visitors. Watling completed his fifty 149 balls while Colin de Grandhomme completed his fifty too off 73 balls. Ben Stokes was not properly utilised by Joe Root. Both New Zealand batsmen looked in comfortable and took the hosts to 316 for 5 at tea.

Soon after the tea break, Ben Stokes was bought into the attack and got the wicket of Colin de Grandhomme with a stunning one-handed catch by Dom Sibely for 65. Watling and Colin de Grandhomme added 119 runs for the 6th wicket.

Mitchell Santer came to the crease and looked steady at the crease. BJ Watling reached his century off 251 balls. After reaching his century, Watling was given LBW but decided to review the decision. There was a big inside edge on to the bat and umpire had to reverse his decision. Mitchell Santer survived few good overs from England bowlers. New Zealand ended the 3rd day on 394 for 6 with a lead of 41 runs. Santer and Watling have added so far 81 runs for the 7th wicket. Santer is still at the crease on 31 off 103 balls.

BJ Watling and Mitchell Santer would be looking to increase their lead on the fourth day to put pressure on England batsmen.

New Zealand 394 for 6 in 141 overs ( BJ Watling 119*, Colin de Grandhomme 65, Kane Williamson 51, Ben Stokes 2/37, Sam Curran 2/74) lead England 353 in 124 overs ( Ben Stokes 91, Joe Denly 74, Tim Southee 4/88, Neil Wagner 3/90) by 41 runs.

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