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Cricket: Black Caps fuming as Voges cashes in

Adam Voges made the most of an umpire's poor call on the opening day of the test and ended the second on 176 not out. Photo / Getty Images
Adam Voges made the most of an umpire's poor call on the opening day of the test and ended the second on 176 not out. Photo / Getty Images

The New Zealand cricket team are livid at continuing to get dudded by incorrect umpiring decisions.

Australian batsman Adam Voges was bowled by a Doug Bracewell 'no-ball' on seven in the final over of the opening day of the two-test series. Umpire Richard Illingworth made the decision on a delivery later shown to be legitimate and Voges took advantage, finishing yesterday's second day on 176 not out.

A section of the crowd chanted "Raise your bat, Illingworth", when Voges reached his fifth test ton.

The Herald on Sunday understands there is fury in the Black Caps camp after the team received apologies and reassurances from the International Cricket Council that there would be no repeat of the Nathan Lyon hotspot incident which jeopardised their chances of levelling November's three-test series in Adelaide.

Television umpire Nigel Llong, in relation to a hotspot mark from a catch off Lyon's bat, delivered the line: "There's a mark on a bat, but it could have come from anywhere."

New Zealand are undefeated in 13 tests at home, equalling a record they set between March 1987 and January 1992.

There were suggestions that, because they have stuck to a spirit-of-the-game mantra under captain Brendon McCullum, they are now treated as a "soft touch" and are unintentionally "getting shafted" because they are so easy to officiate.

The team found it unacceptable that crucial, potentially series-defining decisions were going against them.

Voges has since earned the nickname 'The Don' after playing his way into temporary history by surpassing Don Bradman's test average of 99.94.

The 36-year-old averages 100.33 in his 14th test. The average will still be 92.62 if he gets out without adding to his overnight score and he finds himself in exalted company.

Bradman averaged 94.45 after 14 matches in his 52-test career. Of the four cricketers to play 20 or more innings and average over 60, Graeme Pollock's average was 52.26, George Headley's 56.84 and Herbert Sutcliffe's 74.82.

West Indian Andy Ganteaume averaged 112 in his one test innings against England in 1948.

Voges was last dismissed in a test by New Zealand in Adelaide. He has scored three unbeaten centuries since and taken the mantle for unbeaten test runs (551) from Sachin Tendulkar (497).

Voges has played five test series: home and away against the West Indies and New Zealand, and an Ashes in England.

Usman Khawaja, who batted with Voges in a 168-run fourth wicket stand, said his new nickname had stuck. "[Alternatively] I might have to call him 'Sir Voges'. He batted beautifully, it was almost faultless. The way he's been batting lately, it feels like he's not going to get out sometimes."

New Zealand bowling coach Dimitri Mascarenhas was struggling to come up with a plan.

"It's pretty amazing. He's in a rich vein of form and he's just not getting out. We're going to have to find a way."

It was pointed out that New Zealand had found a way , only for it to be scuppered with no immediate chance of recourse.

"That was yesterday's news, and today we just had to get on with it and knock him over again. It's a tough one to take."



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- Herald on Sunday

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