Stuart Broad admitted England had been forced to work hard for wickets on day four of the third Test against New Zealand.
The Black Caps reached the close on 222-5 after being set a massive target of 553 to win the series decider in Napier.
Spinner Monty Panesar was the leading bowler for the tourists, picking up 3-49 through 31 overs of work.
He was excellently supported by Broad who bowled intelligently on a flat pitch, getting the wickets of Mathew Sinclair and Grant Elliott with two good short deliveries.
"It was not a quick pitch and it slowed down slightly," he told Sky Sports. "We knew we had to hit the deck and create some pressure.
"It was important to change it up as line and length wasn't really cutting through like it was in the first innings.
"It wasn't swinging today whereas yesterday it was swinging all day.
"I bowled a few leg cutters, a few bouncers and used some different angles on the crease to keep them on their toes."
Broad had earlier made a breezy 31 not out after England decided to carry on batting in the morning session, despite conditions appearing to be perfect for their seamers.
With the second new ball just taken before the end of play, the 21-year-old admitted he is hoping the cloud cover returns at the start of day five.
"We were pretty keen to get them back out in the field," he added.
"It's hard work when you are an opening batsman not knowing when the other team are going to declare.
"It didn't swing throughout the day for us but hopefully it'll be cloudy tomorrow and the swing will go again.
"We go back tomorrow needing five big wickets to win a Test match. If we get them it will be superb."