‘These guys are greats of the game’: New Zealand centurion Tom Blundell admits he is ‘in awe’ of Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad after the England pair became the joint-most successful bowling partnership in Test history
- Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad matched the most successful bowling duo
- New Zealand’s Tom Blundell said he was ‘in awe’ of the England partnership
- Blundell and bowler Scott Kuggeleijn had a farcical mix-up on the second day
Tom Blundell said he was ‘in awe’ of the world record equalling strike partnership of Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad after making the century that gave England a taste of their own ‘Bazball’ medicine and kept New Zealand in the first Test hunt.
The Black Caps keeper-batsman made a Test-best 138 to help his side recover from the depths of 83 for five to climb to within 19 of England’s 325 for nine declared on the second day of this day-night match.
England extended their lead to 98 for the loss of Ben Duckett and Zak Crawley before the close but should have been three down after the extraordinary first appearance of Stuart Broad in his ‘nighthawk’ role.
Broad was sent in with a license to attack, in complete contrast to the traditional nightwatchman job, and duly hit his second ball high into the Mount Maunganui sky.
But both bowler Scott Kuggeleijn and keeper Blundell left it for each other and saw the ball drop gently down to earth in farcical scenes.
Keeper-batsman Tom Blundell is ‘in awe’ of Jimmy Anderson’s partnership with Stuart Broad
England’s Anderson and Broad have now taken 1,001 Test wickets in games played together
It was the more orthodox sight of Anderson and Broad taking wickets that occupied Blundell after becoming the last New Zealand wicket to fall – to Anderson – and the 1,001st shared as a partnership by the prolific duo, equalling the tally of Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne.
‘I’m sort of in awe of them,’ said Blundell. ‘These guys are greats of the game and they’re bowling at you which is a cool experience.
‘It’s something that really gets me in fighting mode and takes me to the next level which is always nice when you’re facing the world’s best.’
It was Ollie Robinson who was the pick of the England attack with four for 54 and he paid tribute to the prolific pair who have been ‘very open and honest’ with him since he came into the England attack two years ago.
‘It’s pretty impressive isn’t it?’ said Robinson when reflecting on the pair’s tally. There’s not really words to express how incredible it is but to be on the field with them is a privilege for me and I’m enjoying every minute of it.’
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