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9th March 2009

Davies does the damage for Lions

Mark Davies starred with the ball once more to help England Lions take a firm grip on the second Test against New Zealand A in Lincoln.

The Durham seamer followed up his 4-54 return in the drawn opening Test with 4-47 to help bowl the hosts out for 243 on the second day at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval. That gave England a first-innings advantage of 103, which had been extended to 159 by the close of play as Stephen Moore and Robert Key shared an unbroken opening stand of 56.

Earlier, England added just 15 to their overnight total of 331 for nine, although that was enough time for Sajid Mahmood to convert his unbeaten 40 into a half-century, made off just 57 balls.

Davies wasted little time in impressing when New Zealand began their reply, claiming four of the first five wickets to fall – and, in Aaron Redmond, Jamie How, Peter Fulton and James Franklin, Test players at that – as they slipped to 59 for five. Durham all rounder Liam Plunkett also picked up one wicket for only 23 runs.

Wicketkeeper Reece Young spared the Kiwis’ blushes somewhat by making 71, while Ewan Thompson blazed 60 off just 56 balls to put a dent in the Lions bowling figures. All but 14 of his runs came in boundaries.

Their 83-run stand for the seventh wicket was ended by Gareth Batty, who finished with 3-49 to complement the useful 64 he made yesterday, while Mahmood claimed two late wickets.

A quickfire hundred from Luke Wright then handed England Lions an excellent chance of a series victory against New Zealand A going into the final day of the last Test.

England captain Rob Key declared when Wright was out for 105 from 96 balls, setting their hosts an unlikely 457 for victory at the Bert Sutcliffe Oval in Lincoln.

The tourists need nine wickets tomorrow to complete a 1-0 win after Mark Davies added to his four first innings victims by removing opener Jamie How for the second time in the match, lbw for eight.

To view an up to date match scorecard please click here