Australia’s 2016 tour of New Zealand marked 70 years since the two sides first met in a Test match. On that occasion, at the Basin Reserve in March 1946, Australia were far too strong for the home team, winning by an innings and 103 runs. While New Zealand failed in both innings with the bat, they had one highlight with the ball: Jack Cowie proved his world-class status with 6 for 40.
Although the 1946 match is recognised as the first Test between New Zealand and Australia, there are two footnotes to the story. Firstly, Test status was conferred on the match retrospectively. For several players, this made it the only Test they ever played in. Secondly, up to 1946 Australia had deemed that New Zealand weren’t good enough to face in official Test matches. 1946 did little to dispel this, so regular competitive series between the sides didn’t start until 1973-74.
Watch the clip below to see some of the action from that historic first Test at the Basin Reserve in 1946.