Strange dismissal leaves New Zealand in a bind

Henry Nicholls has been dismissed in the most bizarre way from the last dance before tea to leave New Zealand struggling 5-123 against England on the first day of the third and final Test at Headingley.

A straight shot from Nicholls in Thursday’s post-lunch session hit the outstretched bat of teammate Daryl Mitchell, who was looking to take evasive action on the non-forward end, and deflected into the middle, where Alex Lees took a simple catch. .

Spinner Jack Leach celebrated taking his second wicket of the day with a puzzled look on his face as Nicholls walked away, 19-for-99.

Mitchell was not out and Tom Blundell will join him in the middle after tea.

The other wicket to drop after lunch, from which the New Zealanders resumed 3-65, was Devon Conway, who played to the stumps for 26 to give Jamie Overton a first test wicket on debut.

Nicholls had been given a life on the 10th after being pinned in front of his stumps on a delivery by Matthew Potts.

The referee’s on-field decision was not ruled out and England captain Ben Stokes opted not to review, only for replays to show the ball would have hit the middle and leg.

Mitchell has already reached two centuries and fifties in this series and was looking to be a scourge for England again. His highlight was a ground six against Leach.

Trailing 2-0 in the three-match series, New Zealand won the toss and opted to bat under blue skies in a bid for a consolation victory, but lost Tom Latham to a duck on the sixth ball of the match. , with Joe Root. taking a catch on the impressive Stuart Broad glide.

Broad also eliminated key man captain Kane Williamson by 31 minutes before lunch.

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