Zaheer's fiery five wicket haul puts India on top in Basin Reserve Test

Zaheer's fiery five wicket haul puts India on top in Basin Reserve TestWellington, Apr. 4: An inspired performance by Zaheer Khan on the second day helped India tighten its grip on the third and final Test here.

Khan produced a stupendous spell of fast bowling claiming five wickets for just 65 runs, which handed over India an important lead of 182 runs, as New Zealand was bowled out for a paltry 197 in their first innings.

Khan along with Harbhajan Singh, who grabbed three wickets for 43 runs, made sure that the Kiwis would not close in on the Indian total of 379.

None of the New Zealand batsman had answers to Khan’s seaming and bouncing deliveries, barring Ross Taylor, who showed some resistance during his knock of 42. Opener Tim McIntosh also looked uncomfortable in the middle, but was the second top scorer for the Kiwis in making 32 runs.

India’s second innings, however, started off disastrously as Sehwag lofted a Chris Martin’s delivery into Ross Taylor’s hand.

Rahul Dravid and Gautam Gambhir ensured no further damage, and at the end of day two India was 233 runs ahead.

Dravid was on nine while Gambhir was on 24 with four boundaries.

With India in commanding position, captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni may well become the first Indian captain to lead the team to a series win in New Zealand after 35 years. (ANI)