Hobart triumph a beacon for Black Caps

New Zealand will draw confidence from one of their best fighting victories of recent years when they seek to level the Test series against England at Leeds.

The Black Caps must win the second and final Test starting at Headingley on Friday to secure a 1-1 series draw following their 124-run loss at Lord’s.

Opening batsman Martin Guptill says the size and nature of the defeat hasn’t done anything to knock the tourists’ self-belief.

New Zealand’s fifth-day batting let them down at Lord’s, he said, and proved their undoing in what had been a tight Test.

After scoring 70 in the first innings, Guptill was one of three specialist batsmen to post a second-innings duck, leaving him determined to make amends.

“It was very disappointing. We’re going to come out this week firing, and hope to rectify that,” he said.

“On that last day we just didn’t quite get the batting right. We’re pretty confident we can square the series and come away pretty happy.”

Guptill compared New Zealand’s situation and mindset to the days following a nine-wicket loss to Australia in Brisbane in 2011.

They rebounded to win the second Test by seven runs in dramatic fashion in Hobart.

“We showed that resilience against Australia, winning in Hobart – bouncing back from a heavy defeat,” he said.

“I hope we can do that again, we’re all raring to go for Friday.”

Reducing the impact of England’s man of the match Ben Stokes will be high on the priority list for New Zealand.

As well as claiming key wickets on the final day, New Zealand-born allrounder Stokes unfurled a batting double of 92 and 101, both at rapid pace.

“He’s turned himself into one of England’s better allrounders, that they’ve had for a while,” Guptill said.

“He’s a very aggressive player, likes to come out and play his shots and hits it cleanly.

“We’ll come up with some plans to be able to counter that this week.”

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