Two captains and two decisions dominate the day
Michael Vaughan produced the ideal response for his critics with a lovely hundred, his sixth at Lord's and his first for 15 innings. It was a good knock, too, given that the ball continued to seam around all day and New Zealand were always amongst the wickets.
Throughout his struggle, Vaughan has never looked out of form, and that has been his greatest frustration. Today he drove with all his customary fluency and only perished at the end as he attempted to loft Daniel Vettori over midwicket.
Vaughan and the openers apart, the rest of England's batting found it hard-going. Chris Martin, in particular, was quite a handful - the delivery which Alastair Cook edged to Brendon McCullum bordered on the unplayable - and young Tim Southee was unlucky not to pick up a single wicket. The most successful, however, was Vettori who took his 250th Test wicket and again showed what flight and variation can do for a finger spinner when the conditions offer him nothing.
The question now is if England can possibly prey on New Zealand's fragile confidence and experience to force an unlikely win. It seems impossible for the visitors to conjure a victory, but they are going to have to bat well - and at least until tea on the final day - if they are to deny England.
Meanwhile, since all we usually read about is criticism of umpiring decisions, it is time to highlight two brilliant decisions today by Simon Taufel and Steve Bucknor. First, Taufel judged to the inch that Andrew Strauss was lbw to Jacob Oram, despite the ball not coming back into the left hander from over the wicket. That is always a difficult call because it usually means the ball would have pitched outside leg stump - this one did not. And while Kevin Pietersen will not have been thrilled by Bucknor's decision to despatch him lbw off Vettori, replays showed that, although he was well forward, the ball would have hit middle and leg stump.
Hawk Eye has made a big difference, and spinners in particular are beginning to benefit.