C365 Player of the Week: Peter Fulton
Fulton's career doesn't make for enthralling reading, if we're honest. Even he, at the age of 34, admitted after the first innings' 136 that he'd pretty much given up on a glittering international career.
On behalf of all New Zealanders, and people who enjoy a good underdog success story, I'd just like to say, "You suck, Matt Prior, for stealing Peter Fulton's thunder and making the Black Caps cry!"
That was an exciting end to a Test, right? England looked to be on the brink of defeat, losing all manner of wickets, and then Prior came in and scored a century on day five to ensure a drawn match, and thus a drawn series, to save England's blushes.
But we're still going to give our coveted award to Two-Meter Peter, who scored two centuries in the match. They were his first Test tons, and he is only the fourth Kiwi to score two centuries in one game.
Fulton's career doesn't make for enthralling reading, if we're honest. Even he, at the age of 34, admitted after the first innings' 136 that he'd pretty much given up on a glittering international career. He'd last played a Test in 2009, and this series was probably his last chance to shine.
He'd only scored two fifties in 12 Tests, over a span of seven years, and the two tons he posted this past week pushed his average up to 33, which is hardly impressive for an opening batsman.
His 136 in the first innings at Eden Park came off 346 deliveries, and featured 15 boundaries as the Black Caps posted an impressive 443 all out. England then responded with 204 all out, thanks to a six-fer by Trent Boult, putting the Kiwis in a commanding position.
Fulton then proceeded to add 110 runs in the second knock, this time off a much quicker 165 balls and included five sixes. This left the Kiwis able to declare on 241 for six, leaving England 481 to chase, or survive for 143 overs. They did the latter, with one wicket remaining, thanks to Prior's 110 not out.
The Black Caps were visibly gutted after the match, with Kane Williamson on the brink of tears when speaking to the media, having taken four of those nine scalps. England breathed a sigh of relief, as Fulton's efforts nearly saw them lose a series they were fully expected to win with ease.
Honourable mentions this week go to West Indies spinner Shane Shillingford for his 10-wickt match haul in the second Test against Bangladesh, and to Australia spinner Nathan Lyon for his seven wickets in an innings against India. The Aussies lost the match, but Lyon regained some pride after a tough tour.
<b>Lindsay du Plessis</b>
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