Rahane century boosts India

Ajinkya Rahanescored his first century for India (AP)

Ajinkya Rahanescored his first century for India (AP)

First published in National Sport News © by

Ajinkya Rahane scored his maiden Test century to give India complete control of their clash with New Zealand in Wellington.

Desperate for a victory not only to level the two-match series but also to taste victory away from India for the first time since June 2011, the tourists closed day two with a lead of 222.

Rahane made 118 of India's 438 all out, having arrived at the crease with his side on 165 for five - still 27 runs behind their hosts.

By the time he was dismissed by Tim Southee (three for 93), though, India were in complete control, with captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni adding a quickfire 68 from 86 balls to push the innings further through the gears.

Before the pair had got to work India had been labouring a little.

Shikhar Dhawan, 71 overnight, went for 98 as Southee snared a nick behind out of him, with Ishany Sharma (26) and Rohit Sharma (nought) also departing.

But Virat Kohli's 38 helped get things back on track before Rahane and Dhoni put on 120 for the seventh wicket.

Rahane's ton arrived off 149 balls and consisted of 15 boundaries.

Ravinda Jadega and Zaheer Khan then had some late fun, slapping 26 and 22 respectively off a tired attack. Trent Boult and Neil Wagner joined Southee in taking three wickets, but both were equally expensive, with the former shedding 99 runs and the later 106.

New Zealand returned to the crease for the second time in as many days for nine overs at the end and were left a man down too as Peter Fulton was pinned leg before by Khan for one.

They closed on 24 for one, giving India every chance of wrapping up a win inside three days.

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