New Zealand press lashed the country’s “embarrassingly bad” cricket side Monday after Pakistan routed the Black Caps within three days in the very first Test at Hamilton.
“New year – same old horror story,” the back page of the New Zealand Herald declared, adding that Sunday’s thumping 10-wicket defeat was a depressing begin to a much-trumpeted new era under coach John Wright.
Wellington’s Dominion Post also highlighted the scale of the challenge facing the ex – India coach and Black Caps captain Wright, who was appointed last month following one-day series losses in Bangladesh and India.
“It’s a Wright shambles,” the newspaper thundered, saying there was no excuse for New Zealand’s capitulation at home against a depleted Pakistan team of “dubious quality”.
Criticism focused on New Zealand’s 2nd innings batting, when the Black Caps crumbled to be all out for 110, losing four wickets for one run at one stage, to hand Pakistan a crushing glory.
“There’s almost no need to belittle them, because the 2nd innings batting figures do that all on their own,” the Dominion Post said.
The Herald’s chief sports writer David Leggat said the batmen lacked sense and threw away their wickets.
“Some of the shots were daft, others plain dumb…. New Zealand offered nothing. They simply rolled over,” he wrote, describing the display as “embarrassingly bad”.
Experienced cricket commentator Bryan Waddle questioned whether New Zealand could recover to salvage something from the two-Test series, which resumes in Wellington on Saturday.
“I?ve seen some of poor quality results in the past but generally abroad not at home,” he told Radio Sport. “There?s not much time to recover the feeling of delight and commitment (needed) to accept the challenge that this Pakistan team poses.”
National news agency NZPA said Wright could take comfort in a creditable display by New Zealand’s bowlers on a flat pitch but conceded it was difficult to find positives in such an overwhelming defeat.