Prolific England batting sensation Harry Brook broke Vinod Kambli’s long-standing record on Day 1 of the Welling Test against New Zealand on Friday. Brook remained unbeaten on 184 runs off 169 deliveries which was laced with 24 boundaries and five hits over the fence.
In the process, he became the first batsman in history to score 800 runs after just 9 Test innings. The record was previously held by Kambli (798) but Brook surpassed him to take his tally to 807 on Friday. He also went past legends like Herbert Sutcliffe (780 runs in nine innings), Sunil Gavaskar (778 runs in nine innings) and Everton Weekes (777 runs in nine innings) to add a massive milestone to his name.
Harry Brook calls Welling Test knock as his best
The 24-year-old came to the crease when England were at a spot of bother on 21/3 inside the first seven overs. The hosts won the toss and elected to bowl on a green wicket. That decision paid instant reward as New Zealand quickly dismissed England’s top order of Zak Crawley (two), Ben Duckett (nine) and Ollie Pope (10). Matt Henry and skipper Tim Southee did the early damage for the hosts under expectedly blue skies.
Henry, back after missing the first Test with the birth of his child, forced Crawley into being caught behind as the opener’s sticky run continued. All-rounder Michael Bracewell then made two superb catches in the slips to first dismiss Pope, then Duckett.
The dismissal of Duckett following Bracewell’s diving catch gave Southee a 700th international wicket in all formats, becoming the first New Zealander to reach the milestone.
“I think so,” he said in the presser. “The position of the game makes that decision, to be honest. The ones in Pakistan were amazing and good fun, but they were all very flat pitches. Today wasn’t a flat pitch. It’s a good cricket wicket, but not a flat pitch where you can smack it everywhere. I’ve done that a little bit, but it’s a pretty good pitch.
“It (the pitch) always gets easier when the ball gets a bit older. The longer you bat, it gets easier too. The hardest part about batting is the first 20 balls. If you get through that, it gradually starts to get easier. The ball got a bit older and it probably didn’t seem to do as much. There was still a little bit there, and a little bit of bounce,” he added.