Blackcaps v Sri Lanka: NZ captain Tim Southee credits hard-working bowlers for closing out Sri Lanka in 'horrible conditions'

Blackcaps captain Tim Southee has credited his teammates for toiling in brutal Wellington conditions to wrap up the second test - and series - against Sri Lanka.

Even by the capital's standards, winds were extreme, making life difficult for his teammates - particularly his fellow bowlers - who had been out in the field for the best part of two days, after enforcing the follow-on.

Even TV cameras weren't safe from the relentless gales, with Spark Sport resorting to old-school single-camera coverage from one end, but the Blackcaps' perseverance paid off, as their attack were able to claim the final wicket in overtime to clinch victory by an innings and 58 runs, and with it, a 2-0 series sweep.

The Blackcaps celebrate their second-test win.
The Blackcaps celebrate their second-test win. Photo credit: Getty Images

"She was pretty blustery out there," said Southee. "Not pleasing conditions to be out there in. 

"I can't remember too many times when the camera was taken down. It just shows the sheer force of the winds and the gusts that were out there today... some horrible conditions at times. 

"The guys just managed to find a way to get the job done."

The Basin Reserve pitch offered little for the bowlers on day four, with Blair Tickner and Doug Bracewell called on to fill the role of Neil Wagner (not playing due to injury), taking up the lion's share of work into the wind.

Eventually, Southee had the final say, as Kane Williamson held onto an edge off the bat of Asitha Fernando to bring a merciful end to a mammoth 208 overs in the field for New Zealand.

With the Wellington forecast looking ominous for what would have been day five on Tuesday, that late strike was critical.

"We've had a few follow-ons and you're preparing yourself to possibly be out in the field for a long time," said Southee. "It was great to have the guys want the ball in their hand and wanting to keep coming in. 

"Guys putting up their hand up to bowl into the wind... I think of Blair Tickner's spell early in the day, to come into the wind and to get the two guys out early was massive, and set up the day. Doug Bracewell coming in after a long period of time and wanting to bowl into the wind... the guys just kept on coming. 

"That's a characteristic of the side - to keep going in tough times."

Batter Henry Nicholls was named Player of the Match for his unbeaten 200, while spinner Michael Bracewell finished with team-best figures of 5/150.

The result means New Zealand round out their test home summer on a high, ending an arduous four-test run in little over a month after a drawn series against England, which followed their tour to the subcontinent.

Southee admits his troops are feeling the pinch of that demanding stretch.

"The guys are all a bit weary after a busy wee while," he said. "Test cricket isn't easy.

"The guys were a bit heavy in the legs, but very pleased to have this game wrapped up.

"There's a lot of character shown throughout the home summer and also in Pakistan as well, which is a tough place to go. We got ourselves in positions to win both of those Pakistan matches as well.

"It's been a pleasing few months in the whites. A number of guys have stepped up. 

"We've won from different positions and have shown character to bounce back from a loss at Mount Maunganui [against England]. It's nice for test cricket to be ticking along."

Next up for the Blackcaps is a three-match one-day international series against the Sri Lankans, which begins at Auckland's Eden Park on Saturday.