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Last Updated: Monday, 24 May, 2004, 16:30 GMT 17:30 UK
Hussain seals victory
First Test, Lord's: England 441 & 282-3 beat New Zealand 386 & 336 by seven wickets

Nasser Hussain
Nasser Hussain hit a battling 103 to lead England to a seven-wicket first Test victory over New Zealand.

Needing 282 to win at a sun-baked Lord's, the hosts lost two early wickets in Marcus Trescothick for two and Mark Butcher for six.

Hussain was responsible for the run out that saw Andrew Strauss dismissed for 83 after a century partnership.

But he joined Graham Thorpe (51) in an unbroken stand of 139 to lead England home with eight overs to spare.

Hussain, under pressure for his place after Strauss's first innings hundred, dug in for his 14th century but the first ever fourth-innings ton in a 96-Test career.

Today at Lord's might be a good day to be your last
Nasser Hussain
The home side improved by 64 their previous best fourth innings chase at Lord's, and attained the fourth-highest successful target by any Test team in England.

As crowds streamed into the ground, they had endured a difficult start as stand-in captain Trescothick fell pushing a delivery back to the bowler Daryl Tuffey in the fifth over of the day.

Left-arm spinner Daniel Vettori bowled threateningly for much of the session from over the wicket into the rough outside the left-hander's off-stump.

His only morning success was a moral one, however, as umpire Rudi Koertzen saw only pad and not glove as Mark Butcher was caught at short leg.

Butcher lasted nine overs in all but the pressure to score saw him perish to an impetuous flash at Chris Martin, via an edge to second slip.

Strauss remained confident throughout, taking 97 deliveries to become just the eighth Test debutant to score a century and fifty.

Only when medium-pacers Scott Styris and Jacob Oram bowled in tandem after lunch did he look really troubled, Styris's occasional extra bounce causing real bother.

Just two Test debutants - West Indian Lawrence Rowe and Yasir Hameed of Pakistan - have scored two centuries and Strauss missed out through no fault of his own.

Andrew Strauss
Strauss was run out within reach of a major milestone
Hussain pushed to point and called for the single, continuing to run even though Cairns fielded quickly at point and had passed Strauss as McCullum knocked off the bails.

Thorpe joined his fellow veteran for a fraught 45 minutes before tea as Vettori and pace bowlers Styris and Chris Cairns made them play and miss regularly.

But both batsmen displayed more attacking spirit after the break, Thorpe sweeping Vettori with increasing authority.

Hussain began to advance down the wicket to go over the top to reach his 34th half-century from 158 deliveries.

And by the time Kiwi captain Stephen Fleming took the second new ball the only consideration was whether Hussain could make it to a deserved three figures.

Thorpe passed 50 in 97 deliveries to raise the tension but Hussain took two successive boundaries off Martin to gain his hundred and a single to clinch victory.


England: M E Trescothick (capt), A J Strauss, M A Butcher, N Hussain, G P Thorpe, A Flintoff, G O Jones, A F Giles, M J Hoggard, S P Jones, S J Harmison.

New Zealand: S P Fleming (capt), M H Richardson, N J Astle, C D McMillan, S B Styris, C L Cairns, B B McCullum, D L Vettori, J D P Oram, D R Tuffey, C S Martin.


WATCH AND LISTEN
BBC Five Live's Pat Murphy
"A splendid way for England to start the international summer"


England centurion Nasser Hussain
"This was one of the best cricketing days of my life"




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