Vettori and Ryder centuries forge New Zealand fightback

New Zealand 279 India 29-0
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The Independent Online

Daniel Vettori and Jesse Ryder both struck centuries to lead a New Zealand fightback in the first Test against India here yesterday.

Vettori completed his third Test hundred with a superb captain's knock of 118 while Ryder registered his maiden Test century with 102 to rescue New Zealand from a disastrous start and post 279 on the opening day.

India were 29 without loss in their first innings at stumps with Virender Sehwag unbeaten on 22 and Gautam Gambhir not out six. India have not won a Test series in New Zealand for more than 40 years but thrashed the Kiwis in the one-dayers and have kept their form in this first of three Tests.

They would have been in an even stronger position if Vettori and Ryder had not batted through the entire middle session, adding 186 for the seventh wicket after India's fast bowlers had demolished the Kiwi top order. Ishant Sharma took three wickets before lunch then ended the innings when he dismissed Ryder after tea.

Munaf Patel bagged three wickets, including Vettori and Kyle Mills in two balls, while Zaheer Khan triggered the top-order collapse with two early wickets to vindicate Mahendra Singh Dhoni's decision to field.