London: England slimmed New Zealand's first-innings lead to 60 at a cost of two wickets by the close of day three in the first cricket test at Lord's on Saturday.
England was 74-2 in its second innings, with Alastair Cook and Ian Bell settled after the side wobbled again at 25-2.
The Kiwis were all out for 523 shortly after tea, for a lead of 134. Their sound hopes of a bigger total at the start of the day were undermined by clouds rolling over Lord's, turning the conditions in the bowlers' favor.
Seamers Stuart Broad and Mark Wood menaced, and Ben Stokes was luckless. Offspinner Moeen Ali took two wickets in three balls, rooting out Kane Williamson, the only century-maker in the test, so far.
Williamson personified New Zealand's grind and England's frustration.
After he made his 10th test hundred in 148 balls, most of it on Friday while the sun shone and the pickings were good, it took him 114 balls and most of two sessions to add 32.
He had to batten down, under severe pressure from the English, but he gave them ulcers, too.
On 106, an edge off James Anderson dropped short of first slip. On 108, he survived a run-out chance. On 112, he survived a video appeal by England, given not out to a ball by Wood pitching on leg stump. On 120, he was put down by Ian Bell off Stokes, and on 122, another edge off Wood dropped in front of first slip.
"Throughout an innings you always have a bit of fortune, and is often needed when you're playing very strong opposition, especially the way the English were bowling," Williamson said.
He and Taylor resumed in the morning on 92 and 47, and used the three overs before the second new ball was offered, for milestones. In consecutive balls, Williamson got to his ton, then Taylor reached his 50 after three hours of gutsy scrabbling.
It marked only the second time, and first in 50 years, the New Zealand top four in an innings all scored 50-plus. Extras also contributed 67, the fifth most in test history.
Taylor, on 62, gloved a ball down the leg side off Broad, ending a partnership at 337 that extended New Zealand's dominance after the openers both fell on 148 the day before. Taylor and Williamson shared 189 runs.
Williamson took a back seat while captain Brendon McCullum lit up the gloom over Lord's with a quickfire 42 off 38 balls before giving England debutant Wood his first test wicket.
Rain prompted a slightly early lunch, and delayed the restart for an hour. Allrounder Corey Anderson fell going down the leg side off Wood, whose spell either side of lunch produced 12-2-22-2.
Williamson was finally dismissed by Ali, who was touching the second new ball for the first time after nearly 40 overs. Williamson was pouched by Gary Ballance at backward short leg, after 262 balls.
In the same over, Ali took out Mark Craig lbw without scoring.
Tim Southee's failed hack on 11 gave James Anderson his first wicket in the match, in his 29th over, Matt Henry skied Wood to gully, and Anderson finished off New Zealand by taking a running catch over his shoulder to see off Trent Boult and give Broad three wickets.
Wood and Ali also finished with three each.
Wicketkeeper BJ Watling was stranded on 61. He was cleared to bat in the morning, but still batted in pain after his right knee was badly bruised by a Henry delivery on the first morning, and crucially marshalled the tail. He let Latham take the gloves again when England batted a second time.
Boult and Southee exploited the same conditions England enjoyed.
Opener Adam Lyth hit three boundaries off Boult, who got him out for 12 with a slips catch, then Ballance's off stump was grazed by a wicked ball from Southee to follow his first-innings 1 with a duck.
Bell floundered for a while but found his timing as the lights came back on, and he and Cook endured 18 overs to be on 29 and 32 respectively at stumps.
"If we bat well this next day and get a decent lead, then why can't we bowl them on a last-day pitch?" Wood asked. "Mo took three wickets and he'll have a big job, but if we get that ball swinging we can knock them over."