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Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Johnson bows out as Test fizzles out in draw: T2 D5


Australia 9/559 dec & 7/385 dec (103ov, Smith 138/185b/18x4, Voges 119/240b/16x4, Nevill 35, Johnson 29, Starc 28*, Warner 24, Southee 25-4-97-4, Boult 2/77) drew with New Zealand 624 & 2/104 (28ov, Taylor 36*, Williamson 32*, Johnson 2/20): T2/3 D5/5 at the WACA, Perth. Australia lead series 1-0. Player of the match: Ross Taylor.

Steve Smith and Adam Voges batted Australia to a comfortable position before Peter Nevill and Mitchells Johnson and Starc took them to safety. New Zealand had little chance of chasing down 321 in 48 overs, so the players went through the motions until rain interrupted and then, after Johnson's two wicket last hurrah, bad light ended the Test.

After their mauling at the Gabba New Zealand would have been very pleased with their revival, and satisfied with a drawing a match thanks largely to Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson's batting. Australia will need to make changes for Adelaide because of Johnson's retirement (a pity we won't see him here) and Usman Khawaja's injury: there is debate about who the replacements should be (I think Peter  Siddle should be one of them). The Kiwis should, if they wish, be able to field an unchanged side, but their attack remains weak and the tail long, and they may not have the underpinning of big innings from 
Taylor, Williamson or perhaps Brendon McCullum to keep them competitive.

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