After dismissing the Kiwis for 193 in the first innings, the Indians reached a comfortable 292 for two at close on the second day, taking a 99-run first innings lead at the VCA stadium.
Virender Sehwag (74) provided a flying start along with Gautam Gambhir (78) while Rahul Dravid (69 batting) and Sachin Tendulkar (57 batting) consolidated the position for the hosts with an unbroken 100-run partnership for the third wicket.
Monday can turn out to be an eventful day as Tendulkar, was a picture of concentration. He looks determined not throw it away as he requires another 43 runs to complete the historic milestone of 50 centuries in Test cricket.
He completed his half century after punching part-time spinner Martin Guptill to the sweeper cover region for three runs. The kind of applause he received after completing his 59th half century, one can imagine what will happen if he reached the coveted landmark.
The maestro, who was only perturbed by a few short balls from Tim Southee, hit some delightful strokes on both sides of the wicket. Those included a cover drive and steer off Southee, an arrow like straight drive and a cut off McKay and a drive through the mid-wicket boundary off Martin.
With Dravid (69 batting, 167 balls, 8x4) also looking good for his 31st Test century, the hosts would ideally like to pile up a huge score in order to avoid batting last on this track. The Tendulkar-Dravid duo had added exactly 100 runs for the unbroken third wicket stand.
Image: India's Sachin Tendulkar, right, and Rahul Dravid run between the wickets during the second day of their last cricket test match against New Zealand, in Nagpur, India, Sunday, Nov. 21, 2010.