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Nathan Lyon outstanding display propelled Australia to triumph in the opening Test, clinching the Trans-Tasman Trophy while New Zealand faltered in their second innings at the Basin Reserve. The match concluded with Australia triumphing by 172 runs, a game that will also remembered for Cameron Green’s remarkable unbeaten 174 in the first innings, highlighting his potential at No 4.

Despite beginning day four at 111-3 and chasing a target of 369, New Zealand’s hopes of achieving their best-ever fourth-innings chase quickly faded. They ultimately dismissed for 85-7, with Lyon playing a pivotal role by claiming six wickets for 65 runs in the second innings, marking his fourth 10-wicket haul in Test cricket.

Nathan Lyon

Nathan Lyon pivotal role in Australia’s victory highlighted by his exceptional performance on the field, starting with his decisive move to bowl from the Scoreboard End against the wind. The 36-year-old Lyon quickly made an impact, claiming three victims within his first 10 deliveries, including the crucial wicket of New Zealand’s promising talent, Rachin Ravindra, for 59.

Ravindra’s dismissal was a significant blow to New Zealand’s hopes of securing their first home Test win over Australia in 31 years. Lyon continued his dominance by taking out Tom Blundell for a duck and later achieving his 24th five-wicket innings, surpassing Dennis Lillee’s record. Australian captain Pat Cummins praised Lyon as a “captain’s dream,” highlighting his ability to maintain control and adapt strategies on the pitch.

Josh Hazlewood

The match took a decisive turn on day two with Cameron Green and Josh Hazlewood’s 116-run partnership, contributing to Australia’s commanding position. New Zealand’s captain, Tim Southee, acknowledged this partnership as a key factor in the match’s outcome. Despite efforts from the Black Caps’ lower order, Australia’s bowling attack, led by Lyon, sealed their victory, underscoring the importance of strategic plays and individual performances in cricket.

Glenn Phillips and Matt Henry stood out for the Black Caps in their recent Test match against Australia, with Phillips scoring 71 runs in the first innings and taking 5 wickets for 45 runs in Australia’s second innings. Henry also shone, taking 5 wickets for 70 runs and 3 for 36 in his bowling spells.

Australia’s victory in this match means they retain the Trans-Tasman Trophy, stretching their hold on it into a fourth decade, as New Zealand’s next opportunity to compete for it won’t come until the summer of 2026-27. The Black Caps last won the trophy in 1994 and have only managed one Test victory against Australia since then, which occurred at Hobart’s Bellerive Oval in 2011.

New Zealand has a chance to draw the series in the upcoming second Test at Christchurch’s Hagley Oval, despite the series being limited to just two Tests due to a packed international schedule.

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