Williamson and Nicholls both hit the ball. New Zealand racked up an impressive 580 for four declared on the second day of the second test match on Saturday. Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls both made double century and formed a partnership of 363 during the rout of Sri Lanka’s bowling attack that helped New Zealand reach their target.
The tourists had responded with 26-2 by the finish of play at Wellington’s Basin Reserve and face an uphill battle to avoid being swept in the two-match series after losing the opening test by two wickets in Christchurch on Monday.
In the second innings of that match, Williamson also made a century, which was his 27th in tests. Nevertheless, Williamson’s superb effort on Saturday in the company of Nicholls was an entirely different order of dominance. Nicholls was in good company.
After a rain-disrupted day one, Williamson resumed on 26 not out with his country 155-2 and rarely put a foot wrong until he holed out in the deep in the late afternoon with 215 runs to his name.
As he marched to his sixth double century during the 296-ball innings, the 32-year-old batsman became the first New Zealand batsman to score 8,000 runs in a test match. He did so by pounding 23 fours and a couple of sixes during the innings.
When Nicholls battled his way out of a recent form slump with his greatest test score of 200 not out, he pillaged runs at a slightly lower pace at the other end than he had been doing earlier in the match. That was a historic moment for New Zealand batting, as it was the first occasion that two batsmen achieved double century in the same innings.
After winning the toss and opting to bowl on what appeared to be a greentop, Sri Lanka was forced to watch the Black Caps bat for the better part of two days. They are not the first team to feel this way.
Once Williamson was out of the game, New Zealand continued to swing the bat and add runs to their total before declaring victory. Daryl Mitchell hit 17 runs in a hurry, and Tom Blundell was not out when he scored 17.
The most damage was done to the visiting team by Seamer Lahiru Kumara (0-164), while Asitha Fernando and Kasun Rajitha were both far into three digits in the debit column.
Matt Henry wasted little time in demonstrating them how to bowl on the track, luring opener Oshada Fernando into a push at the ball which Blundell gobbled up behind the stumps.
Doug Bracewell then celebrated his comeback to test cricket after a break of nearly seven years with the wicket of Kusal Mendis, who departed for a duck after Doug Conway made a stunning catch at point.
It is expected that Sri Lanka’s skipper Dimuth Karunaratne, who was not out at 16 runs, and nightwatchman Prabath Jayasuriya, who was unbeaten on four runs, will start their innings on Sunday. Sri Lanka is currently trailing by a significant 554 runs.