Williamson in doubt for third test after New Zealand wrap up Bangladesh series


WELLINGTON:  New Zealand captain Kane Williamson is a doubt for the third test of the Bangladesh series after suffering a torn pectoral muscle in the innings and 12-run second test win in Wellington.

New Zealand wrapped up victory in the rain-affected match at the Basin Reserve shortly before lunch on the fifth day on Tuesday to clinch the three-match series with a game to spare.

Bangladesh, who had needed 221 runs to make New Zealand bat again, were bowled out for 209 as the umpires extended the first session by 15 minutes as a result was likely.

Neil Wagner finished with figures of 5-45.

The final test starts on Saturday in Christchurch, although New Zealand coach Gary Stead said they would be cautious with Williamson, who is likely to be replaced by the uncapped Will Young.

“Kane is obviously keen to play this final game, but we’ll look to take a safety-first approach, particularly with the World Cup on the horizon,” Stead said.

“Will has been in our test squad as batting cover for the past two series and he should be confident following some strong performances domestically and for New Zealand A.”

Stead added that it was too early to determine whether wicketkeeper BJ Watling would be fit for the third test after he did not appear on the fifth day in Wellington having suffered a hamstring strain in the warm-ups.

“BJ has a minor left hamstring strain and we felt it was best he didn’t keep today to give him the best chance of being fit for the third test.”

The victory was New Zealand’s fifth test series win in succession and all the more remarkable with the entire first two days of play washed out, while an hour’s play was also lost at the end of the third day due to rain and poor light.

Captain Mahmudullah provided the only real resistance for the visitors with a counter-attacking 67, while Mohammad Mithun scored a patient 47 and had held off New Zealand’s bowlers late on the fourth day.

Bangladesh had resumed on 80 for three, still requiring another 141 runs to make New Zealand bat again after the hosts’ first innings of 432 for six declared with Ross Taylor (200) scoring his 18th century and Henry Nicholls (107) his fifth.

Mithun had resumed on 25 with Soumya Sarkar on 12.

They thwarted New Zealand for the best part of an hour before Trent Boult got a delivery to climb on Sarkar who nicked through to Taylor at first slip to leave the tourists on 112-4.

Despite Mahmudullah’s resistance, Wagner ran through the tail to give New Zealand the win. Boult finished with 4-52.