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NZ v WI, 1st Test, Review: Hosts wrap up the game to take 1-0 lead as Windies collapse yet again

Neil Wagner was awarded Man of the Match for his seven-wicket haul in the first innings.

New Zealand v West Indies - 1st Test: Day 4
Shannon Gabriel of the West Indies shakes hands with Neil Wagner of New Zealand. (Photo by Hagen Hopkins/Getty Images)

New Zealand wrapped the first of the two-match Test series putting to rest any speculation of a Windies comeback into the game. The visitors, after fighting it out on the third day, wilted once again under pressure and lost their remaining eight wickets after adding just 105 runs to the overnight score. New Zealand won the match by an innings and 67 runs thereby taking a 1-0 lead in the series and started their home season with a resounding victory.

The spirited visitors were hopeful of batting through the day after the way they batted the day before to deny their opposition easy wickets. They were 176 behind before starting to pile up the lead and a good first session would have taken them close. Kraigg Brathwaite and Shai Hope came out with the similar aim to blunt the Kiwi attack and frustrate them further on a good batting wicket. They started well and continued the way they were playing only to raise the fear in the minds of New Zealand.

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But the 12th over of the day brought the much-needed breakthrough for the hosts and surprisingly it was from the spinner Mitchell Santner who took his first wicket of the match. He pinned Brathwaite in front and was adjudged leg before on a well made 91. The wicket just itched the Kiwis up and they sensed an opening. Soon Hope was scalped by Trent Boult which made the visitors camp panic. Matt Henry then came back and castled Roston Chase to eventually end any hopes of a spirited comeback from the Caribbean nation.

Hosts rip apart the Windies line-up

The post-lunch session was full of action as New Zealand ripped apart the lower middle order of Windies batting line-up. The debut game of Sunil Ambris was summed up as he was snapped by Colin de Grandhomme. The procession followed then with Neil Wagner also coming into the action who was the wrecker-in-chief in the first innings with a sensational seven-wicket haul. The skipper Jason Holder and Shane Dowrich fell into his trap this time around and it was unfair to expect from the tail to wag.

New Zealand completed the formalities soon as Boult disturbed the timber of Miguel Cummins. Henry was the pick of the bowlers who broke crucial partnerships on the third day and scalped three wickets. The remaining bowlers also chipped in to support each other well. The near-perfect game for the Kiwis ended with a smile on their faces and their visitors need to answer a lot of questions going into the second and final Test match of the series. They would want to put up a spirited fightback and bat well to give some chance to their bowlers.

Brief Scores

Windies 134 & 319 (K Brathwaite 91, S Hetmyer 66; M Henry 3/57, de Grandhomme 2/40)

New Zealand 520/9decl

Result New Zealand won by an innings and 67 runs

Man of the Match Neil Wagner

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