WELLINGTON: The bowlers of New Zealand again tore through the batting lineup of West Indies to drive them to the verge of a full victory in the second and final Test as they limited the visitors to 244-6 at the end of the third day on Sunday in their second innings.
Around an hour before the scheduled conclusion, bad light pushed the players off the Basin Reserve and umpires called off play shortly before 6:00 pm local time.
Captain Jason Holder was 60 and Joshua Da Silva 25 not out as West Indies managed to force the game into a fourth day, but when they return on Monday, they are in danger of another heavy loss, already trailing New Zealand by 85 runs.
In their first innings, the hosts, who won the first Test in Hamilton by an innings and 134 runs, scored 460, with Henry Nicholls recording his best Test score of 174.
In their first innings early on Sunday, the visitors were dismissed for 131 and stand-in New Zealand captain Tom Latham had no delay in executing the follow-up.
Opener John Campbell (68) and Shamarh Brooks (36) offered some early resistance with an 89-run stand for the third wicket in their second innings.
However the rest of the batsmen were again unable to control Trent Boult, Tim Southee, Neil Wagner and Kyle Jamieson’s four-pronged pace attack in New Zealand and their ability to produce late swing in overcast and chilly conditions.
When he pulled a quick Wagner ball to the mid-wicket boundary for his seventh four, Holder brought up his ninth test half century. He struck two sixes as well.
Boult, who in the first innings did not take a wicket, ended the day with 3-75 in the second.
On Sunday on 124-8, West Indies had resumed their first innings, still 336 runs behind, but lasted just 4.4 overs as Southee took the last two wickets to finish his 11th five-wicket haul in Tests with 5-32.
NEW ZEALAND (1st Innings) 460 (H.M. Nicholls 174, N. Wagner 66 not out. W.A. Young 43; S.T. Gabriel 3-93, A.S. Joseph 3-109).
WEST INDIES (1st Innings, overnight 124-8):
K.C. Brathwaite c Taylor b Southee 0
J.D. Campbell c Latham b Jamieson 14
D.M. Bravo c and b Southee 7
S.S.J. Brooks b Jamieson 14
R.L. Chase b Jamieson 0
J. Blackwood c Latham b Southee 69
J.O. Holder c Boult b Jamieson 9
J. da Silva c Watling b Southee 3
A.S. Joseph c Watling b Jamieson 0
C.K. Holder not out 8
S.T. Gabriel b Southee 2
EXTRAS (LB-3, W-1, NB-1) 5
TOTAL (all out, 56.4 overs) 131
FALL OF WKTS: 1-0, 2-22, 3-29, 4-29, 5-97, 6-111, 7-117, 8-117, 9-127.
BOWLING: Southee 17.4-6-32-5; Boult 14-5-34-0; Wagner 12-5-28-0 (1nb); Jamieson 13-4-34-5 (1w).
WEST INDIES (2nd Innings, following on):
K.C. Brathwaite c Young b Boult 24
J.D. Campbell b Jamieson 68
D.M. Bravo c Nicholls b Boult 4
S.S.J. Brooks c Watling b Wagner 36
R.L. Chase c Latham b Jamieson 0
J. Blackwood b Boult 20
J.O. Holder not out 60
J. da Silva not out 25
EXTRAS (B-1, LB-5, W-1) 7
TOTAL (for six wkts, 65.4 overs) 244
FALL OF WKTS: 1-37, 2-41, 3-130, 4-131, 5-134, 6-170.
BOWLING (to-date): Southee 17-4-63-0; Boult 15.4-1-75-3; Jamieson 15-4-43-2 (1w); Wagner 16-4-53-1; Mitchell 2-0-4-0.