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Monday, November 16, 2015

Taylor 290 takes NZ to lead before Smith & Voges punch back with tons: T2 D4

Australia 9/559dec & 2/258 (63ov, Smith 131*/170b/17x4, Voges 101*/180b/15x4) lead New Zealand 624 (153.5 ov, Taylor 290/374b/43x4, Richardson 166, Starc 37-7-119-4 , Lyon 3/107) by 193 runs with 8 2nd inns wkts in hand: T2/3 D4/5 at the WACA, Perth.

Another high scoring day saw Steve Smith and Adam Voges regain the initiative for Australia after Ross Taylor's magnificent 290 took New Zealand to a 65 run 1st innings lead. 

The pitch has deteriorated little and the bowlers of both sides struggled, though Mitchell Starc less so than the others, to cut through. Yet this shouldn't detract from Taylor's achievement: a quality innings which brought his team back into the Test and series and which showed Australians just how good a batter he is. He deserved to make 300 (and might have reached it had Tim Southee and Trent Boult been able to give him more of the strike).

As Smith, especially, and Voges became more assured against an at best steady NZ attack my thoughts turned once again to whether either side can win from here. Much as I'd like to see a close finish, I can't see it happening here unless Australia set the Black Caps a tempting target which their aggressive batsmen can chase down or fail in the attempt as the home bowlers combine to cut through them. I'll venture to predict a draw.
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