Captain Brendon McCullum led from the front as New Zealand doggedly dragged their way back into the second Test against India in Wellington.
McCullum (114no) struck his ninth Test century and put on a record-breaking, unbroken partnership of 158 with wicketkeeper BJ Watling (52no) on Sunday that has lifted the hosts to 5-252 and swung momentum considerably.
The Black Caps are six runs in front of India with five wickets in hand and two days to play on a Basin Reserve pitch that has flattened out under a baking sun.
If the pair can keep the tiring tourists in the field for long enough on Monday, they have an outside chance of rescuing a Test in which they were outplayed for the first seven sessions.
McCullum, desperate to preserve New Zealand's 1-0 series lead, dropped anchor in an uncharacteristically compact innings. He faced 237 balls and hit 15 boundaries.
"If we had rolled over in this Test match it would have been slightly disappointing given how successful our summer has been," he said.
"It's what the team required and as captain that's what you try and achieve."
Arriving at the crease in the second over of the day following the dismissal of Kane Williamson, McCullum's trademark aggression was nowhere to be seen until the final session.
He deposited Ishant Sharma for six over long-on to raise his century, which took just short of five hours to achieve.
It was the 32-year-old's third century in five Tests and follows his 224 which set up victory in the first Test at Auckland last week.
Watling was the junior partner in the rearguard, hitting just four boundaries in a 208-ball vigil.
It was a welcome return to form for the gloveman, who had scored 12 runs in his previous three innings in this series.
The pair compiled New Zealand's highest sixth-wicket partnership against India, surpassing Chris Cairns and Craig McMillan's 137 at the same venue in 1998.