The West Indies, 302 for 4 overnight continued to build their daunting position on the second day through Adams and one of the other four left- handers in the upper order, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who batted into the afternoon session with little bother.
A year ago Adams was rated, statistically at least, the world's No 1 batsmen after his bounteous returns in successive series against England, India and New Zealand. But problems with his technique, a serious facial injury when struck by a bouncer on last year's tour of England and a knee operation affected his form and confidence. He has struggled for runs as a result and the proliferation of one-day matches that preceded the series, to which his method is not ideally suited, was a further handicap.
The circumstances here came as the perfect restorative tonic. The pitch is flat and true and, without two of their youngest and liveliest bowlers, Chris Cairns and Dion Nash, both injured, the New Zealanders could only offer the pace of Danny Morrison and the sameness of a clutch of medium pacers.
They stuck to their tasks manfully but lacked any penetration. At one stage Chris Harris, who has developed an effective slow-medium over-the- wrist style sent down five consecutive maidens but seldom beat the bat.
Adams was 50 when play began and advanced to his fifth Test hundred by hooking Morrison in front of square leg for his 17th four. He had moved on to 142 when Chanderpaul, who had spent two-and-a-half hours adding just 33, went for 41. The partnership had made 125.
New Zealand had one glaring chance to separate the pair when Chanderpaul, at 13, was yards out of his ground only for Robert Kennedy's throw to miss the stumps at the bowler's end.