Niall Anderson provides five takeaways from day three of the first test between the Black Caps and India at the Basin Reserve.
Boult's chance at history
Trent Boult produced a quirky cricketing record today, and it further aided his chances to secure to an even more obscure world record mark. Boult's entertaining 38 off 24 balls was the highest test score by a batsman who made all of his team's runs while he was at the crease , and his last-wicket partnership with Ajaz Patel was the highest partnership in which the No 11 made all the runs. Boult's cameo also moved him to fourth all-time in most runs made while batting at No 11, with 538 - just 85 runs behind Muttiah Muralitharan's "record" mark. New Zealand could well lay claim to the worst No 11 of all-time (Chris Martin – in attendance in Wellington today) and the best.
Obscure records for all
While we're wandering down this dorky path, Kyle Jamieson also wrote his name in the depths of cricket's hefty record book. His 44 was the highest score by a No 9 on test debut for New Zealand – surpassing Graham Vivian against India in 1965 – while his four sixes were the second-most by any player in a debut innings, behind Tim Southee's infamous nine maximums in Napier in 2008. Jamieson should expect to be batting ahead of Southee in their next innings, while hopefully the unrealistic expectations that followed Southee's debut innings don't plague Jamieson's future batting contributions.
When taking no risks is actually a risk
Cheteshwar Pujara helpfully illustrated the benefits of batting too slowly in the second session today, with his 11 off 81 balls eventually being little more than a waste of everyone's time. While proper application can be handy in wearing down bowlers, all it takes is one good delivery – or in Pujara's case, a brain explosion – to undo all the effort, and leave a batsman walking off the pitch having hardly impacted the scoreboard. Pujara survived a close caught-behind call on three, but 53 balls later he had failed to make the Black Caps pay - leaving a ball from Boult and watching his stump disappear, and his hard work wasted.
One injury concern appears…
Black Caps opener Tom Blundell didn't field today, instead resting his left shoulder after copping a blow diving in the field on day one. He was fine batting in the Black Caps' first innings, but explained that he woke up "a bit stiff" this morning. Blundell was to be assessed at the end of play today, and again tomorrow morning, but although he might not be at 100 per cent, he was still hoping to bat in the second innings when required.
But another disappears…
While Blundell's status is still uncertain, there was better news for Black Caps captain Kane Williamson after he hurt his right middle finger when batting. Williamson was in some discomfort and required bandaging after being hit during the first ball of his innings, not that it showed in his excellent 89, and he went off for a scan this morning. Fortunately for New Zealand's chances – especially considering fears that a break would rule him out of the second test and upcoming Australian ODIs - Williamson was cleared of any fracture, and fielded wearing a light protective guard.