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World England's Burns lauds Lawrence after tough day against New Zealand

23:50  10 june  2021
23:50  10 june  2021 Source:   afp.com

Tim Southee and Rory Burns take headlines while Ollie Robinson impresses again

  Tim Southee and Rory Burns take headlines while Ollie Robinson impresses again Robinson has impacted his debut Test with bat and ball but there was no such good news for James Bracey or Dan Lawrence.Burns, who was dropped midway through the tour of India last winter following five single-figure scores in eight international innings, made a tenacious 132 out of England’s 275 all out.

England's Rory Burns may have ground his way to a valuable 81 on the first day of the second Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston on Thursday but what really impressed the opener was team-mate Dan Lawrence's brisk fifty.

a cricket player during a game: Important innings - Rory Burns made 81 out of England's 258-7 on the first day of the second Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston on Thursday © Paul ELLIS Important innings - Rory Burns made 81 out of England's 258-7 on the first day of the second Test against New Zealand at Edgbaston on Thursday

Burns batted for more than two full sessions, facing 187 balls, before England reached stumps on 258-7.

They were a long way from that total, however, at 175-6 after the Surrey left-hander and James Bracey fell to succesive deliveries from Trent Boult.

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Lawrence though ensured Burns's hard work was not wasted courtesy of a stylish 67 not featuring 11 fours that delighted a crowd of some 18,000, two-thirds of full capacity, following the easing of Covid-19 restrictions by the British Government.

"It was good to watch wasn't it? Loz played beautifully," said Burns, who himself fell just short of a second hundred in as many weeks following his century at Lord's in the drawn opening Test of this two-match series.

a man swinging a baseball bat in front of a crowd: On the attack - England's Dan Lawrence made a valuable unbeaten fifty on Thursday © Paul ELLIS On the attack - England's Dan Lawrence made a valuable unbeaten fifty on Thursday

"He enjoys his flair and some of his shot-making was brilliant today," added Burns, who admired how Lawrence coped with a "slightly two-paced" pitch.

- 'Fluent' -

"I was watching inside with Sibs (Dominic Sibley) and he hit a punchy cover drive...it was a dot in the end but I was like 'what a shot that is'.

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"How he played there and how he managed to be so fluent on that kind of surface was really impressive."

As for his own feelings after not quite completing another Test hundred, Burns said: "It would have been nice wouldn't it?...To back up the runs at Lord's with another good score is something I'm pretty happy with, but I'm disappointed not to get it home".

a group of baseball players standing on top of a grass covered field: Big blow - New Zealand's Matt Henry (C) celebrates with team-mates after dismissing England captain Joe Root for four on Thursday © Paul ELLIS Big blow - New Zealand's Matt Henry (C) celebrates with team-mates after dismissing England captain Joe Root for four on Thursday

New Zealand had made an extraordinary six changes from Lord's, with half of those injury-enforced and the others a nod to their involvement in next week's inaugural World Test Championship final against India at Southampton.

Matt Henry, who replaced new-ball spearhead Tim Southee, returned fine figures of 2-66 in 22 overs -- a haul that included the key wicket of England captain Joe Root for just four.

Henry was particularly taken by the atmosphere generated by the largest attendance at an England match since the pandemic.

"Special mention to the crowd, they were fantastic. The Hollies Stand was just electric all day," he said.

"They were phenomenal, you can see the excitement of everyone getting back into cricket and into stadiums. It was some impressive energy."

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Crowd brings colour back to Edgbaston as England avoid batting collapse .
The ground welcomed 18,000 fans on the first day of the second Test against New Zealand.Burns compiled a hard-fought 81 and Lawrence picked up the mantle to finish with an eye-catching 67 not out from number six, leaving the hosts 258 for seven on day one of the series-deciding second Test.

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