Wellington: New Zealand batsman Ross Taylor declared himself to be in his "best mindset" ever following another century against the West Indies today, one year after being dumped as captain.
Taylor turned around a woeful start by New Zealand in the second Test at the Basin Reserve in Wellington as he posted 129 -- following an unbeaten 217 in the first Test last week.
With help from the West Indies bowlers who failed to cash in on the green wicket after reducing New Zealand to 24-2, Taylor provided the backbone to an innings that recovered to 307-6 at stumps.
He was dismissed to a standing ovation shortly before stumps after completing his 10th Test century and moving further up the all-time New Zealand batting list.
In his 52nd Test, he passed the 4,000 run milestone, moved to the top of the New Zealand batting averages and passed Stephen Fleming to be fourth on the list of New Zealand century-makers.
It was a confident performance far removed from the despondent Taylor of a year ago when his morale was hit hard after being dumped as New Zealand captain, sending him into a self-imposed exile for four months.
Taylor questioned whether he was in the best form of his life but said there was no doubt "I`m in the best mindset I`ve ever been in".
He was dropped in the slips by Kirk Edwards before getting off the mark, but went on to occupy the crease for more than five hours.
"A bit of luck early on in the innings is always nice, and I thought it was there to hit," he said.
"After 20-30 balls I got to where I wanted to be (mentally)."
Taylor said a score of 307-6 on a bowler`s wicket had set New Zealand up and if they can reach 380-400 it "will put the West Indies under some pressure" in conditions ripe for the New Zealand pace attack.
"We just naturally bowl that little bit fuller and we swing the ball, where they nip the ball around a little bit. (Darren) Sammy`s probably their only genuine swing bowler."