DUNEDIN, Dec 14: New Zealand secured a 122-run win in the first Test today as Sri Lankan resistance folded with the loss of seven wickets on the final day.
New Zealand had set Sri Lanka a formidable 405-run target to win but with sufficient time to get there on a non-threatening University Oval wicket.
But Sri Lanka�s batsmen failed to show the necessary patience as they were all out for 282 midway through the last day.
Sri Lanka�s two top batsmen, Dinesh Chandimal and Angelo Mathews, showed some resistance at the start of the day putting on 56 for the fourth wicket before both fell in quick succession.
Mathews was out-witted by Neil Wagner and was dismissed for 25, with top-scorer Chandimal (58) beaten by Mitchell Santner 17 balls later and the match spiralled away from the tourists from there.
The comprehensive victory gave New Zealand their fourth consecutive win over Sri Lanka in the past three years.
After a bold second-innings declaration at 267-3 by Brendon McCullum, Sri Lanka had more than five sessions to reach 405.
When they resumed on Monday at 109-3, and with an extra half-hour tacked on to make up for three rain breaks the previous day, Sri Lanka were 296 runs behind.
But any hopes of a salvage job were built around the experienced Chandimal and Mathews digging in for a long stay at the crease.
New Zealand tried everything to break the partnership, including Trent Boult changing his grip which saw him lose control of one ball, forcing umpire Richard Kettleborough to duck for cover as it shot towards his head.
It was Wagner, recalled after a year out of Test cricket, who broke the partnership when he fired two short deliveries at Mathews.
The Sri Lankan captain shaped up as if he was expecting a third similar delivery only for Wagner to bowl full and the ball speared off the left pad and on to middle stump.
New Zealand 1st innings: 431
Sri Lanka 1st innings: 294
New Zealand 2nd innings: 267
Sri Lanka 2nd innings (overnight 109-3): D Karunaratne c Watling b Southee 29, K Mendis c Watling b Southee 46, U Jayasundera c Watling b Wagner 3, D Chandimal lbw Santner 58, A Mathews b Wagner 25, K Vithanage lbw Southee 38, M Siriwardana c McCullum b Boult 29, R Herath c Guptill b Boult 6, D Chameera b Santner 14, S Lakmal c&b Bracewell 23, N Pradeep not out 4. Extras: (b2, lb4, w1) 7. Total: (10 wickets, 95.2 overs) 282. Fall of wickets: 1-54, 2-64, 3-109, 4-165, 5-165, 6-213, 7-236, 8-249, 9-268, 10-282. Bowling: Boult 15-2-58-2, Southee 21-6-52-3, Bracewell 19.2-5-46-1, Santner 22-6-53-2, Wagner 17-5-56-2, Williamson 1-0-11-0. � AFP