New Zealand have taken the upper hand at the conclusion of Day 2 of their Second Test against the West Indies at the Basin Reserve in Wellington. After another Ross Taylor century on Day 1, the lower order kicked in early on Day 2, adding 134 unlikely runs thanks to a 65 by BJ Watling and some good hitting from Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi and Trent Boult.
They were bowled out for 441, a handy total on a very green wicket which the West Indies bowlers did not take full advantage of. This came from a combination of bowling too short, as well as a handful of dropped catches which left them reeling. Notably, Taylor was dropped on zero, before going on to score 129.
The New Zealand opening bowlers created plenty of chances early on, getting good ball movement to build pressure on the West Indian batsmen. However, none of these chances stuck and the West Indies opening pair were able to build a reasonable start, as the attacking field opened up plenty of gaps for them to exploit.
It was Tim Southee who got the first breakthrough, claiming Kieran Powell for 21 after the West Indies unsuccessfully challenged an LBW decision.
A bowling change to Corey Anderson proved a decisive move, as he began to extract even more swing from the ball. He claimed two big wickets, those of Kirk Edwards for 55 just as he was beginning to get away, and Darren Bravo for just four, coming off the back of a double-century in the First Test.
New Zealand continued to attack, with captain Brendon McCullum offering up holes in the field for the West Indies to hit through at the risk of of finding an edge to a fairly stacked close-in field.
It was this that saw Trent Boult claim the pivotal wicket of West Indian talisman Shivnarine Chanderpaul for just six. Chanderpaul looked to be reaching for a lot of his shots and never seemed comfortable. His wicket came as the highlight of a tremendous spell from Boult, whose seam release was excellent and his variety made him threatening.
The West Indies finished the day at 158/4, with Marlon Samuels at the crease on 50 along with Narsingh Deonarine on 11. They trail New Zealand by 283.