Taylor and Williamson boost Black Caps
Ross Taylor and Kane Williamson put Sri Lanka to the sword as New Zealand recovered from their series-opening defeat by impressing on the first day of the second Test at Colombo's P Sara Oval.
The Black Caps, having suffered a 10-wicket loss in Galle, appeared to have wasted winning a seemingly crucial toss when losing openers Martin Guptill and Brendon McCullum within four overs.
Yet Taylor and Williamson were undeterred and duly put on an outstanding 209-run stand before rain brought an early end to proceedings after 80.5 overs.
New Zealand skipper Taylor, who brought up his century by flicking Shaminda Eranga for two, had progressed to 119 when the heavens opened, while Williamson was five shy of three figures.
The Black Caps know they need to emerge victorious to salvage anything from a miserable tour, in which they were beaten 3-0 in the one-day international rubber.
Guptill and McCullum both fell for four as New Zealand got off to a terrible start.
Guptill opened confidently with a push down the ground for four, only to edge Nuwan Kulasekara to slip off the last ball of the first set of six.
Three overs later, McCullum was given lbw when struck on the pads by Eranga - though replays suggested he was unfortunate due to an inside edge.
With runs coming at a relatively sedate pace, Taylor flashed twice in one Eranga over and got edges over and past the slips for boundaries.
Thereafter, it was a case of accumulation before lunch, which they reached on 96, although Williamson did take a liking to Rangana Herath, plundering three crisp boundaries off the slow left-armer.
The pair continued to score steadily in the second and third sessions, with Taylor’s effort coming off 241 balls and Williamson’s 229.
In particular, they attacked Eranga, who had disappointing figures of 1-70 from 14 overs.