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New Zealand took on Sri Lanka in the first Test of the two-match series at Dunedin on Thursday.

The visitors were caught on their rusty front as their bowlers could not make any impact on the game right from the start of Day 1.

Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson and skipper Brendon McCullum powered New Zealand to 409 for the loss of three wickets at the end of Day 1 on Thursday.

"The way we batted throughout and the way we were able to rotate the strike and get the strike rate going was really pleasing. Any time you get a hundred you're satisfied but to be able to kick on and get to 150 was pretty pleasing and it set the game up well for us," Guptill told reporters at the end of Day 1 in Dunedin.