Australia on top after the second day of the day-night Test against the Black Caps in Perth.

Australia quick Mitchell Starc tore through New Zealand’s batting-order shortly before stumps on a dramatic day two, as the hosts gained a stranglehold of the first test in Perth.

In reply to Australia’s first innings of 416, New Zealand teetered at 109 for five at the close with veteran Ross Taylor unbeaten on 66 and BJ Watling yet to score.

A fired up Starc took four wickets, including the prized scalp of Kane Williamson (34) followed by Henry Nicholls (7) and nightwatchman Neil Wagner (0) in successive balls.

A flagging New Zealand had lost both their openers within the first 10 deliveries. Australia, however, will be sweating on the fitness of quick Josh Hazlewood who was forced off the field in the fourth over after pulling up short in his run up with an apparent left hamstring injury.

Both teams could be without a paceman after debutant New Zealand quick Lockie Ferguson, himself a replacement for injured spearhead Trent Boult, damaged his calf on day one.

New Zealand started disastrously when opener Tom Latham fell for a duck on the fifth delivery of the innings after spooning a return catch to a fired up Starc.

It got worse for the tourists when Jeet Raval was bowled by a full Hazlewood delivery in the next over for one.

New Zealand’s tireless quicks Neil Wagner and Tim Southee claimed four wickets apiece in Australia’s first innings.

Oppressive conditions continued on day two with the temperature reaching 40 degrees Celsius.

RNZ

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