Rutherford’s 171 on Debut Gives N.Z. 235-Run Lead Over England

Hamish Rutherford struck 171 in his Test cricket debut to help New Zealand build a 235-run lead against England with two days of their rain-affected series opener remaining.

Left-hander Rutherford, whose father Ken had a decade-long career with the national team, achieved the seventh-highest Test score on debut at his hometown ground in Dunedin to help lift the Black Caps to 402-7 before rain and bad light forced play to be abandoned for the day.

“It was very special to do it here in front of my home fans and family and friends,” Rutherford, 23, said in a televised interview. “To get out with the first ball of the new ball was very disappointing. I wanted to bat for another half hour and go from there. I don’t like getting out.”

Rutherford, whose 217-ball innings included 22 fours and three sixes, chipped a catch to midwicket to be one of four dismissals for James Anderson, who is England’s best bowler with figures of 4-108. Stuart Broad has 2-89, his first wickets in elite matches since August.

Rutherford’s innings contrasted with his father’s Test debut in 1985, when he got out without scoring in both innings against the West Indies in Trinidad. Ken Rutherford went on to play 56 Tests and also captained the team.

New Zealand, which had resumed today at 131 without loss, reached 255-2 at lunch and then added 130 runs for the loss of five wickets in the middle session by lifting the scoring rate to five runs per over.

Home captain Brendon McCullum, who put England in to bat after winning the toss, was unbeaten on 44 with Bruce Martin on 17 when the the umpires took the players off the field five overs after the tea break. Bad light and rain wiped out the opening day of the best-of-three match contest.

New Zealand, which has lost eight of its past 11 Tests, yesterday dismissed England for 167, its lowest score when batting first in matches between the teams. The Blacks Caps last won a Test series against England 14 years ago.

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