Nicholls gets a lift from fellow centurion Latham in Christchurch

Having travelled to the ground together, Henry Nicholls was delighted to spend plenty more time with Tom Latham in the middle on Friday.

Tom Latham (left) and Henry Nicholls shared in a fourth-wicket stand worth 214, putting the hosts on course for a landslide victory in the second Test.   -  Kai Schwoerer/Getty Images

Henry Nicholls admitted he was inspired by Tom Latham after the "great mates" struck hundreds on another day of dominance for New Zealand in Christchurch.

Latham followed up his record-breaking 264 not out in the series opener against Sri Lanka in Wellington with 176 at the Hagley Oval, while Nicholls was unbeaten on 162 when the Black Caps declared its second innings at 585-4.

The two local lads - who have travelled to the ground together during the second Test - shared in a fourth-wicket stand worth 214, putting the hosts on course for a landslide victory in the second Test.

Set the small matter of 660 with over two days remaining in the match, Sri Lanka slipped to 24-2 by the close of play on Friday.

"It was pretty special to be out there for so long with Tommy," Nicholls told the media.

READ: Latham, Nicholls hundreds puts Black Caps in complete control

"We're really great mates, we carpool every morning together to the ground, so to be out there and put on however many we did, a couple of hundred, and obviously the way he batted yesterday and continued that on today like he did at the Basin [Reserve] last week gave me a lot of inspiration to try and do the same and put us a team in a position where we're now in a chance to win the game with a lot of time left.

"You look back at Tommy's 264 in Wellington, and for him to come out yesterday in the second innings and basically hit reset and do all that hard work again is pretty cool.

"He's a very resilient guy and is one of the most hard-working guys I know. To see him have the discipline to do that for another 300 balls in this innings, and to be out there batting with him, was pretty special."

New Zealand was denied victory in the opening Test by a combination of resilient Sri Lankan batting - Kusal Mendis and Angelo Mathews hitting unbeaten centuries - and the weather, with much of the final day wiped out by rain.

However, Nicholls feels the Christchurch pitch is quicker than the surface used at the Basin Reserve.

"The wicket here has a bit more pace than the one at Wellington and allows you to score quicker at times," he added. 

"For Colin de Grandhomme to come in and show the class and X-factor he has, to really put that total to a big number was great."

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