England cricket captain Joe Root celebrates his century during the second Test between England and New Zealand at Seddon Park in Hamilton, December 1 2019. Picture: PETER PARKS / AFP
England cricket captain Joe Root celebrates his century during the second Test between England and New Zealand at Seddon Park in Hamilton, December 1 2019. Picture: PETER PARKS / AFP

Despite centuries to Joe Root and Rory Burns, England expressed disappointment at stumps on the third day of the second Test against New Zealand after losing late wickets in Hamilton on Sunday.

England captain Root ended his run drought with an unbeaten 114 while Burns rode his luck to post 101. But after they took England to 201/2, the tourists were 269/5 at stumps, still trailing New Zealand by 106.

“I enjoyed the fact I got it [hundred] but at the same time disappointed me and Rooty couldn’t stretch our partnership and get us deeper into the game,” Burns said. “We’re disappointed to lose a couple of wickets at the back end as well.”

With only five wickets remaining and 16 overs washed out by rain in the final session, England’s vision of building a healthy lead was rapidly fading. The tempo swung away from England when Burns was run out and New Zealand followed up with the quick wickets of Ben Stokes and Zak Crawley.

“The run-out got us going,” said Tim Southee, who accounted for Stokes, adding that New Zealand never gave up hope despite the 63 overs it took to break the Root-Burns partnership.

“We hung in there for long enough and we were able to get those rewards late in the day for all the toil we put in. If things aren’t happening you keep on trying.”

With Root and Burns putting on 177 for the third wicket, England found the “bat-long” partnership they had been searching for in their attempt to follow the same recipe New Zealand used to win the first Test.

But after the dismissal of Burns, Stokes was gone for 26 while Zak Crawley made one on debut.

Root was under added pressure to not only guide England to a position of strength but also to end his own run dearth amid suggestions the pressure of captaincy was affecting his form.

AFP