First among equals: Starting points of Australia v New Zealand rivalry

·2-min read
Trailblazers: Ricky Ponting and Stephen Fleming played in the first T20 International between Australia and New Zealand in February 2005 (AFP/DESHAKALYAN CHOWDHURY)

Australia and New Zealand meet in the final of the T20 World Cup in Dubai on Sunday.

AFP Sport looks at the first meetings of the two nations in the sport's three formats:

First Test

March 29-30, 1946, Wellington

-- An Australian side boasting the talents of Keith Miller, Ray Lindwall, Bill O'Reilly and Sid Barnes -- but missing Don Bradman who was suffering from fibrositis -- bowled out the Kiwis for just 42 in 39 overs.

Spin bowling legend O'Reilly claimed 5-14 in what was the first Test of any kind played after the end of World War II.

In reply, the Aussies made 199-8 declared before dismissing the home side for a second time for 54 and victory by an innings and 103 runs inside two days.

The trans-Tasman neighbours didn't play another Test against one another until 1973.

The 1946 New Zealand side was skippered by Walter Hadlee while his sons Richard and Dale played in the 1973-74 series.

First ODI

March 30, 1974, Dunedin

-- New Zealand made 194-9 in 35 overs with skipper Bev Congden top-scoring with 82 in a match dominated by the Chappell brothers for Australia who won by seven wickets with 85 balls to spare.

Greg Chappell claimed three wickets and made an undefeated 42 when Australia batted.

Captain Ian Chappell stroked 83 with 12 fours and two sixes.

For good measure, Australia also won the second game played a day later in Christchurch by 31 runs.

First T20 International

February 17, 2005, Auckland

-- Not only the first ever T20 between the two neighbours but the first ever men's international to be played in the format.

Australia won by 44 runs at Eden Park after making 214-5 in their 20 overs.

Captain Ricky Ponting top-scored with an unbeaten 98 off 55 balls with eight fours and five sixes.

Michael Kasprowicz then took 4-29 to steer the Australians to victory despite a fighting 66 by Scott Styris.

The debut of the format, however, was not the serious, money-making giant it was to become over the next 15 years.

Both teams played in retro gear with some players sporting moustaches, beards and hairstyles popular in the 1980s. New Zealand batsman Stephen Fleming's moustache was described as a "fat slug".

"There's obviously still a lot of work to do in terms of the marketing and where it fits into international cricket, but certainly from a players' point of view it's exciting to play," Fleming said of the new format.

"You get a stage with 30,000 people you're not going to turn that away, so hopefully it's here to stay."

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