BULAWAYO: Ross Taylor and BJ Watling continued to grind Zimbabwe into the dust as their unbroken 220-run stand helped New Zealand build a mammoth first-innings lead on day three of the first Test at Queens Sports Club on Saturday.
Taylor brought up his 14th Test century and converted it into an unbeaten 156, while Watling went to tea on 95 not out as New Zealand reached 543 for five.
With a lead of 379, the focus began to shift to when captain Kane Williamson might declare and begin New Zealand’s push for victory.
The Black Caps lost nightwatchman Ish Sodhi in the second over of the day as they resumed on 315 for four, but that simply allowed Taylor and Watling to get on with their productive alliance.
Taylor started the day on 38 and reached 87 by the lunch interval, while Watling was untroubled throughout his innings and scored progressively quicker as the day wore on.
As Zimbabwe wilted in the field, the pair added 120 runs in the second session without offering a chance.
The hosts were not helped by the continued absence of Sean Williams and Regis Chakabva through illness.
Without Williams’ left-arm spin, legspinner Graeme Cremer was left to wheel his way through 51 overs.
Zimbabwe were bowled out for 164 on the opening day of the Test, when left-arm seamer Neil Wagner recorded career-best figures of 6 for 41.-AFP