Warner, Khawaja lead the way with hundreds
AUSTRALIA emphatically dispelled any doubts about its much-talked about rebuilding period, putting New Zealand to the sword on day one of the first Test at the Gabba.
Apart from a tricky first 45 minutes facing the swing of opening bowler Tim Southee, the hosts cruised to 2-389 at stumps against the self-proclaimed "nice guys" from across the ditch.
Australia's opening combination of David Warner (163) and Joe Burns (71) could have set the tone for a dominant three-game series, forging a 161-run stand for the first wicket.
It was the perfect exhibition of calm batting to get through some good bowling inside the first 10 overs, before Warner's aggressive intent put his team on the front foot.
It took Burns 20 balls to get off the mark at his home ground, driving a Trent Boult half volley for four.
But by lunch the Aussies were cruising at 0-100 from 25 overs on a batting paradise.
Burns showed plenty of class in his 71, while Warner showed great patience to bat for five hours and 13 minutes.
Despite the knock he said he felt as though he had missed an opportunity for a really big score.
"I was a little bit disappointed having got five or six 50s in a row in the second innings. I had it in me to keep going, but I lacked a little bit there. It was great to put some good numbers on the board, but obviously disappointed I got out," he told Channel Nine.
Usman Khawaja, compared to former brilliant batsman Mark Waugh in the lead-up to the Test, was superb in compiling an unbeaten 102, while new skipper Steve Smith hit seven fours in his 41 not out.
Khawaja instantly looked at home in his familiar surroundings at No.3, and showed he was ready to grab his second chance with both hands.
The Blacks Caps bowlers were given plenty of praise before the match, but Southee, who finished with 1-63 off 19 overs, was the pick of a largely misfiring attack.