Key Points:

BRISBANE- An inspired selection and a paceman's paradise at the Gabba helped New Zealand stun Australia and offer them a decent scrap in the first cricket test.

Led by 19-year-old Tim Southee who ripped through Australia's top-order, New Zealand dismissed the home side for 214 as vice-captain Michael Clarke's innings of 98 saved their blushes.

Black Caps openers Aaron Redmond and Jamie How survived a tricky five overs from Brett Lee and Stuart Clark under the Gabba lights to be seven without loss, and a fiery second day in store with more overnight rain forecast.

Southee's selection ahead of 16-test paceman Kyle Mills was a minor surprise, particularly after his match analysis of one for 111 off 31 overs against New South Wales.

But the tour selectors deemed his brisk outswingers a better bet, and there were no arguments after he nicked out Matthew Hayden, Simon Katich and captain Ricky Ponting to reduce Australia to 23 for three.

He ended with four for 63 off 18 overs and there was good backup from Iain O'Brien, two for 44 off 19, while allrounder Jesse Ryder snared his first two test wickets - Brad Haddin then Clarke bowled two runs short of a century.

New Zealand were written off by nearly all, and paying up to A$11 to win the match with some bookmakers pre-match.

All eyes were on the coin toss on a fine Brisbane morning after a violent storm which tore off parts of the grandstand roof, brought down power lines outside the ground on Vulture St and lifted parts of the covers.

The pitch was undamaged but after several days of rain it was always going to be a batsman's nightmare, and captain Daniel Vettori barely suppressed a grin when he called correctly.

Playing his third test, Southee shared the new ball with Chris Martin and roared into action with three wickets in eight balls.

Hayden and Katich both edged deliveries angled across them, and Ponting's was a gem which reared, caught the top edge and looped to Jamie How's safe hands at second slip with the captain on four.

Clarke and Michael Hussey provided the only significant partnership, 73 for the fourth wicket, before Martin trapped Hussey lbw for 35 not offering a shot.

Big allrounder Andrew Symonds, back after the `gone fishing' saga, got a roar from his home crowd and looked like he'd delight them when he crashed Grant Elliott for three consecutive boundaries.

The wheels could have fallen off for New Zealand when Aaron Redmond dropped Symonds at mid-wicket off O'Brien, then wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum gave him four overthrows.

But O'Brien nicked Symonds out next ball for 26 to a jubilant McCullum, then removed Shane Watson in similar fashion for one.

New Zealand caught brilliantly, with McCullum bagging four including a memorable one-hander to remove Lee, while reliable pair How and Ross Taylor caught two each.

It was a welcome turnaround from their six-wicket loss to New South Wales which featured five dropped chances in the first innings.

Clarke meanwhile stood firm in difficult conditions, batting a tick over five hours and facing 2 17 deliveries and hitting nine fours.

But in sight of a century and with No 11 Clark holding on at the other end, Ryder nipped one between bat and pad as he tried to drive and bring up three figures.

Vettori also chipped in with a wicket in his eight overs, Mitchell Johnson caught behind, but it was a day for the seamers.

- NZPA