'I have no doubt they'll be fine moving forward' - Matt Henry unperturbed with New Zealand's recent batting debacles

New Zealand were rolled over for 162 on Day 1 of the second Test in Christchurch versus Australia.

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Matt Henry
Matt Henry. (Photo Source: Twitter)

New Zealand and Australia battled it out on Day 1 of the second Test in Christchurch on Friday, March 8. The Kiwis were dismissed for 162 before Australia finished the day on 124/4.

This was the third consecutive time in the series that New Zealand failed to get to the 200-run mark. In the first Test, they were dismissed for scores of 179 and 196 and eventually lost by 172 runs. While the New Zealand batters haven't been able to live up to their expectations, pacer Matt Henry has been the lone warrior.

On Day 1, after New Zealand were reduced to 107/8, the 32-year-old scored a quickfire 29 off 28 balls and added a crucial 55-run stand with captain Tim Southee. Having scored 85 runs in three innings, New Zealand's No. 9 batter is the leading run-getter in the series for the BlackCaps. He has had to take added responsibility with the bat as the frontline batters have been in abysmal touch. However, Henry isn't too perturbed with their form and backed them to come back strongly in the second innings.

"It's not a concern. I think looking at our batting line-up we've got world-class players there. They've been fantastic for a number of years. I [haven't] got any doubt that they'll be great and they'll be fine moving forward. It's day one of a Test match. The ball is allowed to move around and guys are allowed to bowl well. That's what happens when you come across world-class performers. They have their day sometimes," Henry was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

Henry went on to applaud fellow right-arm pacer Josh Hazlewood, who accounted for five wickets in the New Zealand innings on Friday.

"Josh bowled exceptionally well. Obviously watching him go about his work today, it was probably a bit of a blueprint for how we wanted to bowl out there as well. It was a matter of being accurate for a long period of time and creating pressure and he did that beautifully and thankfully we managed to do that in periods tonight as well and to get a few poles," Henry stated.

Matt Henry lavishes praise on debutant Ben Sears

Playing in his hometown, Henry took confidence from his impressive batting effort and broke the back of Australia's top-order. He finished the day with three wickets, while Ben Sears got the big wicket of Steve Smith on debut. Henry sang praises of the youngster, commending him for his hard work and control.

"It doesn't get much better than that for a first wicket does it. Searsy is a quiet man and he works really hard. Obviously being a young fast bowler for him to start his career like that was outstanding. I think he showed today so much control and excitement and he kind of got the ball rolling for us," Henry said.

"I think we were obviously bowling well and not much was happening and he was able to get that first breakthrough and we could build some momentum from there. Absolutely stoked for the way that he started," he added.

Henry noted that it is very important for New Zealand to take wickets in the early goings of Day 2 as Australia are within touching distance of their first-innings total.

"Tomorrow morning will be a big moment with the ball. We'll make sure that we come out there and hopefully, we can take some early wickets and put Australia under some pressure and then get back into some batting."

Also Read: NZ vs AUS Second Test, Day 1 Highlights: Turning points, match analysis, stats and more

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