Bird's five-for edges Australia closer to series win

Australia require 131 runs on the final day in Christchurch to clinch a 2-0 series win over New Zealand and move to number one in the International Cricket Council Test rankings.

David Warner was the sole batsman to depart as he was caught down leg side on 22 off Neil Wagner before Joe Burns and Usman Khawaja finshed on 27 and 19 respectively to help Australia close out day four on 70 for one. 

Resuming on 121 for four, Kane Williamson fell three runs short of his 14th Test century after he and Corey Anderson produced a dogged fifth-wicket stand of 102.

But Australian pace duo James Pattinson and Jackson Bird used the new ball to regain control.

Bird, who bagged his first five-wicket haul in Tests, collected the scalps of Anderson and Tim Southee before BJ Watling and Matt Henry combined to frustrate the tourists with a 118-run eighth-wicket partnership.

Josh Hazlewood is involved in an lbw appeal row during the second Test against New Zealand in Christchurch

Watling reached 46 before Pattinson sent the wicketkeeper-batsman back to the pavillion. Henry, who hit a career-best 66, was dismissed seven runs later as the Black Caps were bowled out for 335.

In reply, chasing 201, Australia began strongly with Burns and Warner opening with a 49-run stand before Watling caught the latter off Wagner.

Meanwhile, pace bowler Josh Hazlewood pleaded guilty for dissent after using offensive language today. 

Hazlewood had an lbw appeal against Yorkshire overseas signing Williamson turned down by umpire Ranmore Martinesz and then third umpire Richard Illingworth with television technology showing that the opener edged the ball into his foot.

The New South Wales-born seamer vehemently expressed his anger at the decision as his rant was picked up on the stump microphone.


Source: ECB

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