Wellington: Having failed to press for a series-leading victory on an unresponsive Dunedin pitch, New Zealand are looking at the Basin Reserve surface with more expectation ahead of the second Test starting Thursday. New Zealand has rolled over England for 167 in the first innings at University Oval but managed just six on the second after the tourists replied to a deficit of 293 by posting 421.
That has left New Zealand's coach hoping for more assistance in Wellington. "It's difficult. We don't want ones with steep pace and bounce but we would have liked a little bit more and maybe if it had another day or so on it, it might have been a bit more variable," Mike Hesson was quoted as saying by TV3 News on Monday. "I've spoken to him [the head groundsman at the Basin Reserve] and I'll head down there later to have a look. But it's a good cricket wicket."
New Zealand skipper Brendon McCullum looked back at the washed out opening day as a big reason in the drawn result. "Maybe if there was a sixth day that would have unfolded. I'm certainly not unhappy with the pitch. It was hard work for the bowlers," he said.
New Zealand have not won a Test match in Wellington for five years.