Rain and darkness stop play

RAIN and bad light has stopped play in the first test between Australia and New Zealand with the tourists steadying the ship after a disastrous first session.

Former skipper Daniel Vettori steadied New Zealand's innings with an unbeaten 45 before bad light forced an early break for tea on day one of the first cricket test against Australia.

New Zealand slumped to 96-5 when Jesse Ryder was dismissed by Mitchell Starc in the over following lunch Thursday, but 108-test veteran Vettori combined with Dean Brownlie (32 not out) in an 80-run, sixth-wicket stand to lift the total to 176-5.

With dark clouds causing deteriorating light at the Gabba, and thunder storms in the forecast, umpires decided to leave the field after 51 overs.

Starc had the best of the Australians figures at 2-52 from 13 overs. He took the only wicket after lunch, although Michael Clarke and David Warner both put down catches off Brownlie.

Brownlie was on three when he edged to Clarke, who put down a routine chance at slip from Peter Siddle's bowling. In the next over, Brownlie miscued a cut to point, where Warner got both hands to the ball but couldn't stop it skidding to the boundary. The New Zealand batsman inside edged a good-length ball from Starc millimeters past his off stump in a french cut to the boundary to beat 12.


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