In spite of the fact that Joe Root performed when it mattered the most for England as they were undergoing a must win situation after losing the first Test in Mount Maunganui by an innings and 65 runs. Before the series against the Black Caps, he had scored only 535 runs in 9 Tests.
Root said it had been a frustration more than a worry that he had gone 14 Test innings without a century but his return to form gave him confidence.
After they went inside three by stringing the ball between two staggered trench field players to find the border of the third man, a few singles brought him to 199.
Root's only real miss-step came when, on 199, he called Pope through for a quick single and his partner was nearly run out at the non-striker's end.
Root advanced down the track and creamed Matt Henry for a sumptuous straight six - his only maximum to go with 22 fours - which heralded a more adventurous approach from the Yorkshireman and Pope.
The New Zealand fielders gave up their catches for runs of 10 and 19, while they lost the opportunity to run out on 87 runs.More news: 1 dead, Hwy. 401 westbound closed near Kingston, Ont., after major pileup
Wagner picked up an impressive five-wicket haul, but England got a decent lead of 101 runs.
It was just reward for Neil Wagner, though.
Mitchell Santner then ended Root's innings of 226 in the very next over.
It also surpassed Williamson's unbeaten 200 in February against Bangladesh as the highest score by anyone in 26 Tests at Seddon Park.
He is now the 10th leading Test run-scorer for England.
View day five of the second test between New Zealand and England from 9 p.m., Monday on Sky Sports Cricket.More news: Qatar placed in Group B at Copa America 2020
Root's double century, off 412 balls, was the slowest for England since Dennis Amiss' 432-ball effort against West Indies in 1974.
Pope was ready to run at the end of the non-striker and he had to be when Root dropped the ball in offside and left, he was always safe, but the same could not be said of Pope.
Williamson was ruffled by Jofra Archer, who bowled short and into his body, while Ben Stokes tried the same tactic with Taylor later in the evening.
Williamson ducked and Taylor pulled in an unbroken 68-run partnership across 25 overs.
Root began day four on 114 and batted excellently to reach his third Test double hundred, sharing a sixth-wicket partnership of 193 with Ollie Pope, who scored 75. "I have never felt like it has been far away". "I would have been nice to get a couple more wickets towards the end but we got ourselves into a position from which we could possibly win this game, so hopefully the weather holds off tomorrow and we get a couple of early wickets and put them under pressure".More news: Ghana's Jeffery Schlupp Scores Again As Crystal Palace Pip Bournemouth