Brendon McCullum stole the show with the first triple-century in New Zealand Test cricket history on Day 5 of the second Test against India, and the resulting draw in Wellington was good enough to secure the Black Caps a series victory.
It was a huge day for the hosts, who declared on 680-8 and left India with an unchaseable target and two-and-a-half sessions to see out.
India managed that, reaching 166-3 by the time the two captains shook hands, but they will rue the fact that at the midway point of the match they looked sure to record a series-levelling win.
|New Zealand vs. India, 2nd Test: Day 5 Scorecard|
|New Zealand 2nd Innings||1st Inns 192||India 438|
|Fulton||lbw||b Zaheer Khan||1||6||6|
|Rutherford||c Dhoni||b Zaheer Khan||35||77||55|
|Williamson||c Dhoni||b Zaheer Khan||7||37||22|
|Latham||c Dhoni||b Shami||29||110||64|
|B McCullum||c Dhoni||b Zaheer Khan||302||771||559|
|Anderson||c and b Jadeja||2||12||6|
|Southee||c Pujara||b Zaheer Khan||11||9||9|
|Extras||7nb 2w 9b 12lb||30|
|Total||for 8||680||(210.0 ovs)|
|India 2nd Innings||1st Inns 438||NZ 192 & 680-8 dec.|
|Vijay||c Anderson||b Southee||7||21||22|
|Pujara||c Watling||b Southee||17||75||50|
|Ro Sharma||not out||31||119||97|
|Extras||2nb 2w 0b 0lb||4|
|Total||for 3||166||(52.0 ovs)|
A full crowd turned up despite it being the Tuesday of a Day 5 match—everyone was desperate to see whether McCullum could eclipse the record score by a New Zealand batsman. He resumed on 281, and needed 19 runs to secure both the record and triple.
He made it, to the delight of the Basin Reserve, even if two deliveries after the celebrations he edged behind for 302.
Jimmy Neesham, batting at the other end, quietly passed a century on his debut as well—he finished with an unbeaten 137 from 154 balls, upping the run rate with the tail-enders.
The declaration brought some excitement—not only were the skies overcast and conducive to swing, but the New Zealand opening pair were lively and probing.
Quickly India found themselves down at 10-2 and 54-3, with a victory on the cards to cap New Zealand's day.
But Virat Kohli staged a "mini-McCullum" resistance, posting an unbeaten 105 from just 135 deliveries to steer India to safety.
The wait goes on for the tourists, however—they've not won a Test overseas since June 2011, and they come away from their tour of New Zealand not just defeated but winless, having taken a 4-0 beating in the ODI series that preceded it.