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Vaughan the King of Lord's

England captain scores record-equalling sixth century at HQ

Vaughan: love affair with Lord's continued

Michael Vaughan's sixth Lord's century allowed England to claim a first-innings lead of 42 in the first Test against New Zealand.

Vaughan was last out for 106 in his side's effort of 319, equalling Graham Gooch's record of six three-figure scores at the famous venue.

New Zealand reached 40-0 in their second innings to finish just two runs behind overall, but with rain and bad light having taken 153.2 overs out of the match on the opening three days, there appears little prospect of a positive result on the final day.

England resumed on 89-0 with hopes of building a commanding response to the Black Caps' 277 all out, especially given the pleasant batting conditions that greeted the sides on the fourth morning.

And although they eventually managed to grind out a modest lead, the loss of wickets at regular intervals - including six for 87 runs either side of lunch - was not the intended script.

After Alastair Cook and Andrew Strauss had brought up their first century opening stand, a change of ball brought a change in luck for the visitors.

Umpires Steve Bucknor and Simon Taufel agreed to a switch after 32 overs of the innings due to the initial offering having become misshapen.

Chris Martin was soon celebrating a success with the replacement as, having been struck for two boundaries earlier in the over, he found the outside edge of Cook's (61) bat.


That was the start of a collapse that saw England reduced to 208-6 by mid-afternoon. Strauss (63) and Kevin Pietersen (3) each fell lbw to Jacob Oram (2-45) and Vettori respectively, while Ian Bell (16) edged behind off the impressive Martin (2-76).

Vettori had Collingwood (6) held at slip and Tim Ambrose lbw shouldering arms with consecutive deliveries to leave the hosts in danger of conceding a first-innings deficit.

But left-handers Stuart Broad (25) and Ryan Sidebottom hung around long enough for Vaughan to more than double his score and turn the momentum back in England's favour.

The Yorkshireman's 18th Test ton came at a sedate pace, off 204 balls, and included a couple of anxious moments - the most notable Martin's declined lbw appeal on 30. He brought up three figures in the evening session by hauling Vettori through the leg-side for his 11th four.

The innings did not last much longer than Vaughan's celebrations, as Sidebottom (16) and Monty Panesar (0) fell in consecutive overs, and - left with only James Anderson for company - Vaughan picked out deep midwicket off Vettori (5-69), whose fifth wicket of the innings was also the 250th of his career.