The Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis has single-handedly set-up the rest of the Chappell-Hadlee series after almost pulling off a remarkable victory in the first game at Eden Park.
Stoinis scored his maiden ODI century, to take the Australians from 54/5 in the 13th over, to within six runs of victory.
It was a much-needed victory for the Black Caps, after their dismal effort in the first three games in December.
It took a while for the New Zealand bowlers to wrap up the Australian innings, but coach Mike Hesson was not too concerned about their bowling at the end.
"We've just beaten in the number one team in the world, so things are going reasonably well.
"Eden Park in itself is a really difficult ground to defend, and if you ever want a hundred runs off the last 10 overs, then it's Eden Park.
"But we certainly got hit to areas of the ground where we didn't want to get hit, and the next venue (McLean Park in Napier) will be different again and so we'll be looking to adapt a bit better."
Hesson said they were not really taken by surprise by Stoinis' innings.
"I don't think anyone expected him to play like Superman, he obviously didn't have a great Big Bash with the bat, but we knew from the IPL and previous BBL's what he's capable of, perhaps not to that degree though.
"However, he assessed the situation well on a ground where you can catch up, and I thought he controlled the innings well and it was there for the taking at one point."
Game two is in Napier on Thursday, with the third in Hamilton on Sunday.