Lyon spins Australia to 172-run win over New Zealand in first Test


Spinner Nathan Lyon took 6-65 as Australia wrapped up a 172-run win over New Zealand in the first Test in Wellington.

The hosts were dismissed for 196 before lunch on day four as Australia went 1-0 up in the two-match series.

New Zealand had started the day on 111-3 chasing a victory target of 369.

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Lyon, 36, dismissed Rachin Ravindra, Tom Blundell and Glenn Phillips inside the first hour to set the tone as he claimed a 24th Test five-wicket haul.

Daryl Mitchell and Scott Kuggeleijn offered some resistance with a 36-run partnership for the Black Caps’ seventh wicket, but all-rounder Cameron Green, whose 174 not out in the first innings was instrumental to Australia’s success, dismissed the latter for 26.

Mitchell batted on despite taking a blow to the helmet from a Green delivery and was the last man out for 38, while captain Tim Southee was Lyon’s sixth victim – and the off-spinner’s 10th in the match.

The defeat leaves the Black Caps with only one win in 24 Tests against their nearest neighbours this century. The second match in the series starts in Christchurch on Friday.

Australia captain Pat Cummins praised Lyon and Player-of-the-Match Green for their performances.

“Cam was amazing, he was really the difference in the end,” he said. “I thought the way he went about it, with that intent, really put the pressure back on the bowlers on day one.

“There was as much bounce as I’ve seen in any wicket for a long time but thankfully it spun which, with Nathan in our side, is always a pretty good thing.”

New Zealand pace bowler Will O’Rourke is a doubt for the second Test after leaving the field with a tight hamstring on day three with Southee not ruling out an instant recall for veteran pace bowler Neil Wagner, who retired last week. (BBC)

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