Black Caps survive the final day to earn a hard-fought draw

Black Caps debutant Rachin Ravindra played 91 deliveries to give New Zealand a dramatic first Test draw against India just as the home team's weirdos were about to force the win on Monday night.

New Zealand won 284 and was 165-9 when referee Nitin Menon dropped out after checking light readings in each of the previous six overs. Ravindra was unbeaten at 18 while final runner Ajaz Patel hit 23 balls to avoid knocking out 2. The last wicket partnership faced 52 deliveries on the late fifth and final day to keep India from winning.

Ravichandran Ashwin got 3:35 and colleague Ravindra Jadeja was 4-40 when New Zealand lost six wickets for 66 runs on either side of the tea break. Axar Patel also took 1-23. "Ravindra has shown great composure (and) Ajaz Patel with his defense," said Ashwin, who switched to 419 wickets - behind Harbhajan Singhs 417 - and after Anil Kumble (619) and Kapil Dev (434th) the third on India's list of all Times was).

"Everyone holds out, everyone can defend himself well these days." After lunch, which hit New Zealand at 79-1, the downfall began when Umesh Yadav (1-34) made the elusive breakthrough when night watchman William Somerville caught the first ball after resuming for 36 of 110 deliveries.

Somerville put up 76 with Tom Latham for the second wicket, with the pair winning the first session. Latham was the top scorer with 52 balls out of 146 for his 22nd Test of the half century. He also scored 95 in the first innings. The meltdown began after New Zealand topped 100 in the 47th run.

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Latham played on his own stumps ahead of Ashwin, triggering a breakdown from 118-3 to 128-6 within 15.1 overs. Jadeja was in charge of Ross Taylor (2) while Kane Williamson (24) was trapped with an lbw when New Zealand went to tee 125-4.

Axar Patel had Henry Nicholls (1) lbw sacked and New Zealand's middle order put up little resistance when Ashwin bowled Tom Blundell (2). Kyle Jamieson (5) and Tim Southee (4) helped Ravindra eat 11 overs before falling against Jadeja and there were only 10.4 overs left in the day.

The referees repeatedly checked the fading light, but play continued with about two overs remaining until the dramatic call-off. Both teams scored four points for a tie in the test world championship. The second and final test begins on Friday in Mumbai.