Cricket: Waughs make light work of New Zealand

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New Zealand 217 Australia 235-4

The Waugh twins, Mark and Steve, yesterday shone with a century partnership as Australia took charge of the second Test against New Zealand under floodlights at the WACA Ground in Perth.

The brothers took advantage of a rule change that allowed them to bat on under lights when play would otherwise have been stopped because of bad light. At close on a rain-affected second day, Australia were 235 for 4 in reply to New Zealand's first innings of 217 all out, a lead of 18 runs.

The Waughs combined in a fourth-wicket stand worth 153 runs after coming together with Australia in potential trouble on 71 for 3. Mark Waugh missed a deserved century after scoring 86 runs with typical flamboyance, ending a run of mediocre scores.

Steve Waugh, as usual, played the more cautious, circumspect role to finish on 79 not out and in sight of his 15th Test century. However, he survived a chance on 40 when Stephen Fleming, the New Zealand captain, dropped a relatively easy chance at first slip, much to the disappointment of the bowler, Geoff Allott.

The floodlights at the WACA ground were switched on just before 6pm local time, allowing play to continue for a further 30 minutes to the scheduled close. Play was extended by one hour to compensate for the loss of three hours to rain.

New Zealand won toss

NEW ZEALAND - First innings 217 (C D McMillan 54, C L Cairns 52; S K Warne 4-83).

AUSTRALIA - First innings

*M A Taylor lbw O'Connor 2

M T G Elliott c O'Connor b Cairns 42

G S Blewett c Astle b O'Connor 14

M E Waugh c Parore b Doull 86

S R Waugh not out 79

I A Healy not out 3

Extras 9

Total (for 4) 235

Fall: 1-3 2-53 3-71 4-224.

To bat: R T Ponting, P R Reiffel, S K Warne, M S Kaprowicz, S H Cook.

Bowling (to date): Doull 14-2-49-1; O'Connor 17-3-60-2; Cairns 13-6-35- 1; Vettori 16-6-39-0; Allott 12-2-47-0.

Umpires: D B Hair (Aus) and G Sharpe (Eng).