Brendon McCullum came to his side's rescue after the fall of three early wickets to notch up his eighth Test century on the first day of the first Test against India at Auckland. At close of play, he was unbeaten on 143 as the Kiwis finished on 329/4. (Final report)
McCullum walked out to bat early in the first session with the Kiwis struggling at 30 for three as Hamish Rutherford, Peter Fulton and Ross Taylor all fell cheaply. (Live Blog)
He joined forces with an in-form Kane Williamson to resurrect the ship and eventually snatch the momentum away from India's grip. The duo added 221 runs for the fourth wicket.
While Williamson continued to be a headache for MS Dhoni & Co. throughout the ODI series, scoring five consecutive fifites, McCullum stuck by his aggressive mind set, cutting and pulling the Indian bowlers to slam a 135-ball century. His ton included 16 boundaries and one six. He reached his century in style with a huge six off Ravindra Jadeja. (Scorecard)
He and Williamson came out in the second session with a clear plan in their minds to take the game to the opposition and they did it to perfection. While Williamson played some exquisite strokes through mid-wicket and straight down the ground, McCullum stayed true to his aggressive nature. He was offered some short bowling early on and he did not hesitate to put them away on either side of the point boundary with precision. (The Kane Williamson show continues to haunt India)
India's tactic of bowling short to the big-hitting McCullum backfired badly as he pulled and hooked the ball comfortably.
After adding 125 runs off just 27 overs for the fifth wicket with Williamson, McCullum continued to play his shots in the final session of the opening day of the Test series to bring up his eighth Test ton. Having done that, the duo continued to pile on the runs in the final session. Even Williamson's departure did not deter McCullum's plans as he combined with Corey Anderson (42 not out) to amass 150 runs in 39 overs in the final session to takes New Zealand's total to 329/4.