Tests 4 to 6 of the history of New Zealand at Headingly.
1973. England. An innings & 1 run
Leeds in 1973. The centre of England football.
Anyway, look at that; another innings defeat at Headingley. And it was an unfitting way for the series to end. A series that featured NZ almost mowing 479 down in the first test, and a dropped Wadsworth catch way from a famous victory in the second.
But the tourists made it hard on themselves on the first day. When you lose three wickets in four balls in the first hour batting first it’s always going to be tough. Especially when you have chosen to bat first.
Burgess and Pollard (of course) turned the innings around but 276 was unlikely to be a match winner.
Boycott scored his first home century over the weekend, and the last wicket stand of over 50 turned the knife. Amongst all this Collinge took 5/74.
On Day 4 it was all England and Geoff Arnold as New Zealand, with the exception of Turner found the damp pitch hard to handle. But, like in 1965, at least the match went to the fifth day with one wicket remaining.
But to sum up a series of “What if”s it seemed right that Turner was a questionable lbw short of carrying his bat for a record breaking third time, another century, and one run short of breaking the trilogy of innings defeats at Leeds.
Ten years later that was to change.
1983. New Zealand. 5 wickets
At last, after all those years of trying New Zealand finally got a test win in England, and it was at Headingley of all places.
It is a win sprinkled with good bits of trivia and irony. After the first test the UK media went large on the idea that New Zealand was a one man RJ Hadlee side. So to win a test with Hadlee to go wicketless in such an historic victory was gold. He did tie them down with the ball, and scored 75 for good measure to avoid accusations of shirking.
Next piece of trivia. All wickets fell to bowlers with surnames starting with the letter “C”. Not unlike England in the 1950s with the letter “L”. Laker, Coney; where’s the difference?
The victory was set up on the first day. Credit has to go Geoff Howarth after winning the toss. He got the adage that at Leeds you “Look up, not down” before deciding to do. He looked up, saw cloud and Cairns had 7/74 on the first day, and England were all out.
They had lost their last 7 wickets for 50.
Edgar retired hurt early so it was up to John Wright to anchor the reply. He shared a century partnership with Martin Crowe, playing his first significant test innings to put the visitors in the box set. But when the Crowe brothers and Wright fell within a run of each other things were even.
Enter Hadlee with that 75, and a returning Edgar; second to last out for 84, and New Zealand had a lead in excess of 150.
In the second England innings there was Gower at one end with an imperious 112*, and the next highest scorer was Lamb with 28. This time it was Chatfield with the 5WI, but the wickets of Lamb and Botham in quick succession were Jeremy Coney’s biggest moment as a test bowler.
New Zealand needed 103 to win. Inevitably there were a couple of flutters along the way, and time for Willis to take 5/35, but they got there with five wickets to spare.
2004. England. 9 wickets
Back to that crazy tour again.
Seriously, after day 2 New Zealand bats first and they are 351/6. Cairns and McCullum are set. Papps has already scored 86, and Saggers is playing for England. What could possibly go wrong?
But this was the series that defined frustration felt by New Zealand cricket fans. Finishing on 409 the question was whether there was enough time to push for a victory. But England had other ideas; 153 runs put on for the first wicket at more than four an over. Trescothick ended up scoring a century but it was on the fourth day that the screws were turned; Geriant Jones of all people scored a century and Flintoff made 94.
You know it’s not the most potent of bowling attacks when Scott Styris is your leading wicket-taker in the match. Oram had a side strain or something so could not bowl, Vettori pulled a hamstring that ruled him out of the rest of the series, including batting in the second innings and Papps had broken a finger which meant he came in at number 9 in the second innings.
Part 1 of 2 here