x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

McCullum and Williamson lead New Zealand fightback

Williamson made 113 while McCullum was unbeaten on 143 as New Zealand closed on 329 for four having been sent into bat at Eden Park.

Captain and wicketkeeper MS Dhoni, left, watches Captain Brendon McCullum of New Zealand bat during day one of the international cricket match Test match between New Zealand and India at Eden Park in Auckland on Wednesday. AFP PHOTO / David Rowland
Captain and wicketkeeper MS Dhoni, left, watches Captain Brendon McCullum of New Zealand bat during day one of the international cricket match Test match between New Zealand and India at Eden Park in Auckland on Wednesday. AFP PHOTO / David Rowland

Captain Brendon McCullum and Kane Williamson both struck centuries to leave New Zealand in a dominant position following the opening day of the first Test against India in Auckland on Thursday morning.

Williamson made 113 while McCullum was unbeaten on 143 as New Zealand closed on 329 for four having been sent into bat at Eden Park.

The hosts had looked in some trouble after being reduced to 30 for three with Ishant Sharma sending back Hamish Rutherford (six) and Ross Taylor (three) while Zaheer Khan claimed the scalp of Peter Fulton (13).

However, the departure of Taylor saw McCullum join Williamson at the wicket at they wrestled back the initiative in superb fashion with a fourth-wicket stand worth 221, although the latter did have a life after being dropped in the slips when on 32.

That partnership was finally ended when Williamson, having struck 10 fours and two sixes while notching his fifth Test hundred was caught behind by Mahendra Singh Dhoni off Khan.

Any India hopes that might spark a New Zealand collapse fightback were crushed though as McCullum and new batsman Corey Anderson shared in an unbroken 78-run stand to take the Black Caps through to stumps with no further setbacks.

Anderson will resume the second day on 42 not out while McCullum will look to build further on his eighth Test century.

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