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Cricket: Dropped catches a 'coincidence', says Tim Southee

This was only really a half-chance for Trent Boult but it is too good a pic not to use. Photo / Photosport
This was only really a half-chance for Trent Boult but it is too good a pic not to use. Photo / Photosport

New Zealand's catching woes suffered another setback on the opening day of the second test against Bangladesh at Christchurch.

While the hosts dismissed the visitors for 289, three spills quelled their momentum.

Second slip Jeet Raval suffered a poaching glitch in front of first slip Ross Taylor when Soumya Sarkar edged Colin de Grandhomme on 56, at 108 for two. Soumya made 86.

Nurul Hasan did the same on 25 from de Grandhomme at 207 for five when neither slip committed; Tim Southee dropped him on two at 184 for five off Trent Boult; and Taylor dropped the Bangladeshi keeper on 36 at 247 for six off Neil Wagner. Nurul made 47.

Bangladesh's total could have reduced by 73 runs if the chances were held.

The result could be put down, so to speak, to an anomaly. However, with six chances going begging in Wellington last week, the red flag is start to flutter.

Another concern is the identity of the culprits. The likes of Southee and Taylor once had hands like fly paper; now those reputations are under scrutiny.

"No one means to drop a catch," Southee said after what was otherwise an outstanding day for him with a sixth five-wicket bag in tests.

"We've dropped a few in the past couple of games, which is disappointing given the high standards we set.

"It's not a skill thing. We know everyone can catch. It's just coincidence... but we still managed to take 10 wickets."

Southee disputed any suggestion of a communication problem between Taylor and Raval as the new first and second slip combination since Martin Guptill's exit.

"Not at all. You don't get a lot of time at slip, so you need to make a decision to go for it or hope the guy behind you gets it.

"I don't think it's a breakdown. A number of guys field in the slips; they've chopped and changed the last wee while."

Southee paid tribute to B-J Watling with whom he now shares the New Zealand record for wicketkeeper-bowler dismissal combinations. They shared their 44th dismissal with the catch of Shakib Al Hasan down the legside, overtaking Ian Smith and Sir Richard Hadlee. Watling has also taken two catches as a fielder off Southee's bowling.

"'c Watling b Southee' looks good in the scorebook, especially with a couple of burgles down the legside," Southee said.

"We've been a combination for a while now. It's nice to know you've got a good keeper who grabs the majority of chances."

- NZ Herald

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