NEW ZEALAND’S Kyle Jamieson appeals against Indian batsman Ajinkya Rahane during first Test at the Basin Reserve on Friday.—Reuters
NEW ZEALAND’S Kyle Jamieson appeals against Indian batsman Ajinkya Rahane during first Test at the Basin Reserve on Friday.—Reuters

WELLINGTON: Fast bowler Kyle Jamieson made an impressive start to his Test career taking 3-38 here at the Basin Reserve on Friday as New Zealand left India 122-5 on the rain-shortened first day of the first Test.

Ajinkya Rahane was 38 not out and Rishabh Pant 10 when stumps were drawn.

Jamieson was called up for Neil Wagner, New Zealand’s most successful seamer of recent seasons, whose wife is expecting their first child.

New Zealand feared a hole in their bowling attack in Wagner’s absence but Jamieson, who also made his international white-ball debut this season, stepped easily into the gap and ensured New Zealand took advantage of an influential toss.

His first wicket in Tests was Cheteshwar Pujara (11) and his third, not long before rain shortened the day to two sessions, was Hanuma Vihari (7). The one he will remember longest was India captain Virat Kohli (2) who was out before lunch and whose dismissal swung the balance of the match in New Zealand’s favour.

New Zealand captain Kane Williamson didn’t hesitate to bowl on winning the toss; the team winning the toss have bowled first 26 times in the last 30 Tests at the Basin Reserve.

When the covers were drawn away from the pitch after some light morning rain it was green, moist and seemed to offer every advantage to the bowling team. The pitch at first was a little slow and holding, hardened through the day and made the bounce sharper.

There was only a little seam and not much swing despite the low cloud that hung over the ground through the first two sessions and brought the rain during the tea break.

For Jamieson those conditions were ideal. His height he stands 2.03 metres (6’8’) allowed him to use the bounce as the pitch hardened but he made most use of fuller deliveries which just nipped away. All of his wickets were catches behind the stumps.

He bowled full to Pujara, angling the ball into middle and off and forcing the batsman to play. When Pujara pushed tentatively forward, the ball just deviated, took the outside edge and carried to wicket-keeper B.J. Watling.

The delivery that accounted for Kohli was wider but still full. Kohli lunged well forward, the ball straightened just a little and took an edge, carrying to Ross Taylor at first slip.

The dismissal marked a collaboration between a player in his first Test and another playing his 100th. Taylor on Friday became the fourth New Zealander after Stephen Fleming, Daniel Vettori and Brendon McCullum to play 100 Tests and the first to play 100 matches in all three formats.

Vihari also fell to a full ball which demanded a shot and which moved enough to give Watling another catch.

Jamieson also had a hand in the dismissal of Mayank Agarwal after the opening had endured all of the first session. Trent Boult tried a shorter ball and Agarwal, playing off his hip, got a top edge which flew to Jamieson at fine leg.

Tim Southee claimed the first wicket of the day, bowling Prithvi Shaw for 16 when India were 16-0.

The rain came after tea, shortening the day though New Zealand had done enough to advance the match. A strong wind made conditions difficult for batsmen and bowlers.

Scoreboard

INDIA (1st Innings):

P. Shaw b Southee 16

M. Agarwal c Jamieson b Boult 34

C. Pujara c Watling b Jamieson 11

V. Kohli c Taylor b Jamieson 2

A. Rahane not out 38

H. Vihari c Watling b Jamieson 7

R. Pant not out 10

EXTRAS (LB-1, W-3) 4

TOTAL (for five wkts, 55 overs) 122

TO BAT: Ravi Ashwin, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah

FALL OF WKTS: 1-16, 2-35, 3-40, 4-88, 5-101

BOWLING (to-date): Southee 14-4-27-1; Boult 14-2-44-1; de Grandhomme 11-5-12-0; Jamieson 14-2-38-3 (3w); Patel 2-2-0-0

UMPIRES: Richard Kettleborough (England), Aleem Dar (Pakistan)

TV UMPIRE: Michael Gough (England)

MATCH REFEREE: Ranjan Madugalle (Sri Lanka)

Published in Dawn, February 22nd, 2020