Kanpur - India closed in on victory on Monday in the first
Test against New Zealand, with the visitors reeling at 205 for seven at lunch
on the final day despite half-centuries from Luke Ronchi and Mitchell Santner.
The Black Caps, who resumed on 93 for four after being set
an unlikely 434 for victory, lost three more wickets during another tough
session at Kanpur's Green Park stadium which is hosting India's 500th Test.
Mitchell Santner on 57 and Ish Sodhi on two were battling
against a persistent Indian bowling attack when the players broke for lunch.
A 102-run partnership between overnight batsmen Ronchi and
Santner helped New Zealand put up some resistance in the first hour of play on
the fifth day.
Ronchi's fighting 80, laced with nine fours and a six, gave
the visitors a glimmer of hope of clinching a draw.
But left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja, who registered a
five-wicket haul in the first innings, managed to break their stand when Ronchi
mistimed a flatter delivery and was caught at point by Ravichandran Ashwin.
Pace spearhead Mohammed Shami also claimed two wickets in
the morning session, including wicketkeeper-batsman BJ Watling.
Ashwin claimed three wickets on Sunday to reduce New Zealand
to 56 for four at one stage, after getting openers Martin Guptill and Tom
Latham in quick succession.
Ashwin also had skipper Kane Williamson dismissed lbw to
claim his 200th Test wicket on the fourth day to give India a firm grip in the
first of the three Tests.