Kane Williamson scores seventh test ton

22:26, Jun 29 2014
Denesh Ramdin
West Indies skipper Denesh Ramdin celebrates the dismissal of BJ Watling with Sulieman Benn on the first day of the third test in Barbados.
Kane Williamson
New Zealand batsman Kane Williamson drives the ball on the opening day of the third test against the West Indies in Barbados.
Tom Latham
Black Caps opener Tom Latham is dismissed LBW by Kemar Roach on the first day of the third test.
Jimmy Neesham
Jimmy Neesham hits out during his innings of 78 off 91 balls that helped the Black Caps through to 293.
Jimmy Neesham
Shane Shillingford stops a return shot as he almost collides with non-striker Jimmy Neesham.
Ross Taylor
Ross Taylor gets runs off Jerome Taylor during his innings of 45.
Hamish Rutherford
Hamish Rutherford stretches and studies the pitch before the first ball on day one.
Trent Boult
Trent Boult is stumped by West Indies wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin during NZ's collapse.
Mark Craig
Mark Craig celebrates dismissing West Indies opener Chris Gayle on day two.
Kensington Oval
A panoramic view of Kensington Oval after rain cut short play on day two.
Kraigg Brathwaite and BJ Watling
Kraigg Brathwaite turns to see NZ wicketkeeper BJ Watling has prevented him from scoring.
Kraigg Brathwaite and BJ Watling
Kraigg Brathwaite plays an off-drive in front of BJ Watling's waiting gloves.
Kemar Roach
West Indies bowler Kemar Roach celebrates his 100th test wicket after dismissing BJ Watling on day four of the third test in Barbados.
Kane Williamson
New Zealand batsman Kane Williamson celebrates on day four after scoring his seventh test century.
Jimmy Neesham
New Zealand's Jimmy Neesham drives the ball on day four of the third test against the West Indies at Kensington Oval.
Brendon McCullum
Black Caps skipper Brendon McCullum sweeps the ball on day four of the third test against the West Indies.
Kane Williamson
New Zealand batsman Kane Williamson pulls the ball on his way to 58 not out on the third day of the third test against the West Indies in Barbados.
Hamish Rutherford
New Zealand opener Hamish Rutherford is caught by West Indies keeper Denesh Ramdin off the bowling of Kemar Roach on day three of the third test.
Neil Wagner
Black Caps bowler Neil Wagner celebrates the dismissal of West Indies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul on the third day of the third test at Kensington Oval in Barbados.
Denesh Ramdin
The New Zealand cricketers celebrate the wicket of Denesh Ramdin with Tim Southee on the final day of the third test against the West Indies in Barbados.
Tim Southee
New Zealand quick Tim Southee reacts after taking the wicket of Denesh Ramdin on the final day of the third test against the West Indies in Barbados.
BJ Watling
New Zealand keeper BJ Watling stumps star West Indian batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul on the final day of the third test at Kensington Oval.
Trent Boult
New Zealand fast bowler Trent Boult celebrates after claiming the wicket of West Indies batsman Kirk Edwards.

Kane Williamson marched to his highest test score amid the Barbados rain as New Zealand's lead topped 300 heading into a tense final day of the third and deciding cricket test against West Indies.

After the players returned for 4.2 overs in the evening gloom, the rain closed in again with New Zealand 331-7 in their second innings, a healthy lead of 307 at stumps on day four. The immovable Williamson was unbeaten on 161, having controlled the West Indies attack for nearly six-and-a-half hours.

With the series poised 1-1, the Black Caps will be desperate for a fine day tomorrow, with as many as 105 overs available to dismiss West Indies a second time.

Kane Williamson
TERRIFIC TON: Kane Williamson scored his seventh test century this morning in the third test against the West Indies.

Captain Brendon McCullum faces a tough decision around how long to bat and set the hosts a steep chase, or risk defeat and give his bowlers plenty of overs as they pursue just their second Caribbean series victory 12 years after the first.

They may opt to wield the willow for a short period tomorrow, weather permitting, mindful that the fast outfield and short boundaries encourage quick scoring.

Paceman Neil Wagner said yesterday they would back themselves to defend anything over 250, on a dry Kensington Oval pitch that was offering some variable bounce, but hadn't played as many tricks as expected.

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Williamson and Jimmy Neesham (51 off 67) seized control for the Black Caps after day four began evenly poised, the tourists leading by 99. Just 55.1 overs were possible on day four as downpours caused a lengthy afternoon delay.

McCullum didn't linger too long, trapped lbw by Kemar Roach for 25 and unsuccessfully challenging the decision, before Williamson and Neesham added a rapid 91 for the fifth wicket.

Williamson was watchful and demonstrated soft hands and deft foot movement on the turning pitch, raising his seventh test century off 173 balls including 15 boundaries.

It drew him level with Martin Crowe in the New Zealand record books, both having notched seven test centuries before their 24th birthdays, three ahead of current batting coach Craig McMillan. Williamson turned 24 in August.

Neesham's flying test start continued as he blasted four sixes in a knock which gave New Zealand control. But just after raising his second half-century of the match, he was caught at short cover.

One criticism of Williamson was that he hadn't yet kicked on to a big century, with his previous best being 135 in the win over Sri Lanka at Colombo in November 2012.

This time he rumbled on, reaching his first 150 with a dab behind point for four off Jerome Taylor for his 21st boundary. He'd faced 271 balls at stumps.

Roach (4-55) was clearly the best West Indies bowler, but spin duo Shane Shillingford and Sulieman Benn twirled 44 wicketless overs between them. Benn couldn't repeat his five-wicket bag on day one and had figures of 0-94 off 26 overs.

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