By Steve McMorran ,AP
WELLINGTON, New Zealand — Matt Prior and Kevin Pietersen made half centuries and Stuart Broad captured two wickets with consecutive balls as England held off a New Zealand rally to stay in command of the second cricket test on Friday following an eventful second day.
Prior (82) and Pietersen (73) lifted England to 465 in its first innings after it briefly had been challenged by a determined New Zealand bowling performance.
Broad then removed Hamish Rutherford (23) and Ross Taylor with successive deliveries in the late afternoon to leave New Zealand staggering at 66-3 at stumps in reply.
Rutherford was caught at slip by Alastair Cook, who had previously caught Peter Fulton for 1 when New Zealand was six. Taylor then walked past the first ball he faced from Broad and was bowled, leaving Kane Williamson, 32 not out, and Dean Brownlie to guide New Zealand to stumps.
New Zealand fought hard to get back into the match Friday after winning the toss and erroneously choosing to bowl first, a misjudgment highlighed when England reached 267-2 by the end of the first day.
After taking three wickets in the first session and two early in the second, New Zealand looked to be winning back some ground. The rally was short-lived, though, as Pietersen, Prior and Steve Finn (24) quickly re-established England’s advantage.
Left-arm paceman Trent Boult dismissed Jonathan Trott in the second over of the day before Trott could add to his overnight score of 121, starting the New Zealand attack.
The 32-year-old Bruce Martin, who dismissed Nick Compton (100) before stumps on Thursday, then captured the wickets of Pietersen, Ian Bell (11) and Joe Root (10), giving him his second four-wicket bag in only his second test.