Sharma's triple strike rocks New Zealand
India celebrate catching out Hamish Rutherford of New Zealand during the 2nd International Test cricket match between New Zealand and India in Wellington at the Basin Reserve on February 14, 2014 - by Marty Melville
After being sent into bat on a green Basin Reserve wicket, New Zealand progressed cautiously to 23 without loss before the introduction of Sharma saw India take a firm grip on the first session.
In the space of 14 deliveries he removed both openers, Hamish Rutherford and Peter Fulton, as well as debutant Tom Latham to finish the session with three for 14 from nine overs.
Mohammed Shami claimed the wicket of Brendon McCullum (eight) shortly before lunch, leaving Kane Williamson not out 15 with Corey Anderson yet to score.
Williamson was given out lbw on the last ball before lunch, but was called back when replays showed Zaheer Khan had no-balled.
Although the wicket was green and hard, new ball pair Khan and Shami were unable to exploit it effectively.
Their inconsistent line and length failed to create chances, giving Fulton and Rutherford a chance to grow in confidence after misfiring in all six innings since a 95-run stand in the first Test against the West Indies in December.
But the arrival of Sharma shattered any thoughts New Zealand had of being able to bat through the morning session in bowler-friendly conditions.
He had Rutherford (12) caught in slips trying to fend off a short, rising delivery, and delivered a fuller-length ball that moved off the pitch and slammed into the front pad of Fulton (13).
Latham, batting a number four in place of the unavailable Ross Taylor, faced eight deliveries before he had a crack at one seaming away and was caught behind.
Williamson and McCullum attempted to rescue the innings and lifted New Zealand to 45 before McCullum spooned a Shami delivery to Ravindra Jadeja at mid-off and was gone for eight.