Captain Brendon McCullum and Kane Williamson both struck centuries to leave New Zealand in a dominant position following day one of the first Test against India in Auckland.
Williamson made 113 and McCullum was unbeaten on 143 as the hosts closed on 329 for four having been sent into bat at Eden Park.
That looked to be an inspired decision by India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni when New Zealand slumped to 30 for three at the start of the 18th over on a grassy drop-in wicket under overcast skies.
Fine catches from Ajinkya Rahane at gully and Ravindra Jadeja at short mid-off gave Ishant Sharma the deserved wickets of Hamish Rutherford and Ross Taylor, while Dhoni pouched Peter Fulton behind the stumps off Zaheer Khan for 13.
However, the departure of Taylor saw McCullum join Williamson and they wrestled back the initiative in remarkable fashion with a fourth-wicket stand of 221, although the latter did have a life after being dropped in the slips when on 32.
That partnership was finally ended when Williamson, having struck 10 fours and two sixes while notching his fifth Test hundred, feathered Zaheer down the leg side and was caught behind.
Any India hopes that might spark a New Zealand collapse were crushed as McCullum and new batsman Corey Anderson shared in an unbroken 78-run stand to take the Black Caps through to stumps with no further setbacks.
Anderson will resume on 42 not out while McCullum will look to build further on his eighth Test century.