Indian captain Virat Kohli hammered a listless New Zealand attack with a superlative double hundred as the hosts piled up a mammoth 557 for five on the second day of the third cricket Test here.
Kohli stroked his way to a career-best 211 and was brilliantly supported by Ajinkya Rahane, who also notched up his highest score of 188 as the home team gained a clear upperhand on a pitch that will only get difficult to bat with passage of time.
At stumps, New Zealand were 28 for no loss with Martin Guptill (17 batting) and Tom Latham (6 batting) at the crease.
Kohli struck 20 hits to the fence while Rahane was equally dominant in his innings that was laced with 4 sixes and 18 boundaries.
The duo decimated the New Zealand attack to pile on a huge fourth wicket partnership of 365 the highest-ever for India for the fourth wicket against all teams.
When Virat Kohli declared half-an-hour before close, Rohit Sharma (51 not out in 63 balls) and Ravindra Jadeja (17 not out) were at the crease after adding a quick-fire 53 runs in 59 balls for the unbroken sixth wicket.
Sharma cracked his third successive half-century of the series and struck 2 sixes and three fours.
The day’s proceedings belonged almost entirely to Kohli who surpassed his previous best of 200 against West Indies at North Sound while Rahane eclipsed his previous best of 147 against Australia at MCG.
It was the second double century by Kohli in the space of six Tests and three months.
These two batsmen’s complete domination of the clueless New Zealand bowling attack enabled India to add 98 runs in 30 overs in the second session after they had added 91 runs in the pre-lunch session after resuming at the overnight 267 for 3.
Both batsmen exerted complete sway over the visitors’ attack and were hardly beaten before they fell early in the post tea session.
They made the visitors chase leather for more than three sessions after joining forces in the post lunch period of play on day one yesterday with the score on 100 for three.
When the partnership was broken by off-spinner Jeetan Patel, who trapped Kohli leg before the wicket as he tried to flick in the first over after tea, the Indian score had advanced to 465 and the stand had consumed nine minutes under eight hours and lasted 673 balls.