Stephen Fleming was a relieved captain after New Zealand ended a seven-match losing streak against Australia with a thrilling final-over win in Melbourne.
The Black Caps, whose previous win over Australia came in January 2002, won by four wickets with Hamish Marshall's unbeaten 52 off 50 balls the star turn.
"It's pretty damned good, considering the last two or three weeks.
"I'm delighted we turned it around so quickly," Fleming said after the Kiwis had dropped the recent Test series 2-0.
"They have played some pretty good cricket against us,
winning seven in a row, so it's nice to break that sequence.
"They've been pretty tough as they usually are when you come to Australia.
"It's a nice change of fortune through some good cricket and I'm pleased it sets up a series we think pretty highly of."
New Zealand now hold a 1-0 lead in the inaugural three-match inaugural Chappell-Hadlee Trophy.
Bastting first, Australia looked in good shape on 113-1 before Daniel Vettori (3-31) helped effect a collapse which saw four wickets fall for 10 runs.
But a 71-run stand for the sixth wicket between Darren Lehmann (50) and Michael Clarke (36) helped Australia post a respectable score.
And Australia looked the likely winners as New Zealand's required run-rate grew in the closing overs of their chase.
But Marshall and Brendon McCullum took 22 runs off the 48th over - bowled by Mike Kasprowicz - to pave the way for New Zealand to win with two balls to spare.
Captain Ricky Ponting said Australia let the match slip after twice being in a strong position - at the start of their innings and in the field where two crucial catches went down.
"But in saying that we still probably should have won," Ponting said.
"We all make mistakes, Kasper's [Kasprowicz] bowled a few ordinary deliveries in that over but we're certainly not blaming him.
"The whole fielding side of it was pretty sloppy. The bowling was very good, we just didn't back them up in the field."