HELPING HAND FOR SERIES WIN CHANCE!
Byline: David Clough Sports Correspondent email@example.com
ENGLAND'S ambition will be curtailed but distinctly more achievable when they return to try to close out a series-clinching stalemate against New Zealand on the final day at Headingley.
When Alastair Cook and Adam Lyth began the hosts' second innings, it was on a highly improbable mission to rewrite Test cricket history in pursuit of 455 to pull off a new all-time highest run chase.
After almost two full sessions of rain, instead of another 158 overs in which to turn 44 without loss into a distant victory, they need only stretch out their 10 wickets for three sessions to draw the match - and win the Investec series 1-0. After the hectic happenings here and at Lord's in back-to-back Tests, England therefore have it within their grasp to begin their Ashes summer with a heartening success.
The notion that they could still press for 2-0 ought not to persist long into today.
A required rate of little more than four an over in a maximum 98 would not be out of keeping at all with the tempo set by their opponents over the last two weeks, and occasionally themselves.
But the risk-reward ratio favours conservatism, however outrageously Cook's ultra-adventurous opposite number Brendon McCullum chooses to dangle the carrot.
In the circumstances, with a forecast long suggesting a significant proportion of remaining playing time would be spirited away, McCullum might have reason to reproach himself for delaying his declaration until England's task - approaching lunch on day four - extended by 37 runs the most ever made to win in the fourth innings in almost 140 years.
Hoylandswaine batsman SP Singh (above left) hit 38 against his old club Shepley while Barkisland's Seth Oddy (above right) had 34 in a losing cause against Woodlands
Rain is helping, but Alastair Cook still had a lot of batting to do to help save the Test at Headingley today
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|Publication:||Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)|
|Date:||Jun 2, 2015|
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