New Zealand

The One’s To Watch In This years World Cup

James Taylor has blossomed since entering the International Arena, while his England team mates have struggled, he most definitely hasn't.

James Taylor has blossomed since entering the International Arena, while his England team mates have struggled, he most definitely hasn’t.

With the cricket World Cup is very much in full flow now, this tournament promises to be a cracker. The team here at Asian Sunday take a look five players who we think will ‘light up the tournament’.

Although the World Cup is just a few games old there are already a few players who are catching ‘the headlines’. In New Zealand’s emphatic win over Sri Lanka, unsurprisingly Corey Anderson caught our eye as well as his New Zealand team mate and captain Brendan McCullum. Ultimately we want to chose some players that you might not be aware of.

Corey Anderson (New Zealand)

The New Zealand all-rounder who hit the headlines with the fastest one day international at the time off 36 balls is a key player lower down the order for the Kiwis. Even in the World Cup Opener against Sri Lanka,Anderson showed the cricket world why he is a key player for the Black Caps. A cleaner striker all around the ground and a decent bowling option, Corey Anderson could be a key man for New Zealand in this years World Cup- but also for many years to come for New Zealand overall.

James Taylor (England)

When analysing a game, not many would give a mention to a player on the losing side – but James Taylor’s brilliant knock was the undoubted highlight of a very lacklustre England performance against co- hosts Australia. Although small in size this young Englishmen is very quickly becoming a man of ‘giant stature’. After a good season for Nottinghamshire the 24 year old has finally been given his chance at International level. Taylor may have a different style to Corey Anderson – but will be effective in a slightly different way. England have been crying out for so many years for a player who can rotate strike and remain calm under pressure. In James Taylor we are convinced England have their man.

Harris Sohail (Pakistan)

The 26 year old Harris Sohail has only just broken on to the international scene now, how the world of cricket mourns over that fact. Sohail a 26 year old left handed all rounder is truly the whole package, a very useful spinner of the cricket ball and a clean striker of one. For us though it’s Harris Sohail’s very good temperament in pressured situations that have already impressed us in his career so far.

Ajinkya Rahane (India)

In a batting line up including Rohit Sharma (a world record holder) , Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni, you might be surprised that we picked out Rahane. The Rajasthan Royals opener has been selected in our list for his temperament and all round good game, a similar reason to James Taylor. A batsmen who has exceeded in all formats, Ajinkya Rahane could be a key factor in the tight games. Rahane does boast of scoring centuries in England and South Africa, Rahane has all the shots so it’s fair to say the 26 year old can most definitely ‘walk the walk’.

David Miller (South Africa)

Just like Rahane, Miller is potentially another surprise choice – but if you have watched the Indian Premier League in recent months, I really don’t think anyone will be that surprised why he has made our list. The Punjab Super Kings player like Corey Anderson is destructive if the bowling is to straight. Time and time again the Punjab player has made big knocks when his team needed him. Although Miller maybe unproven in International cricket, we feel it’s a matter of time before the whole cricket world takes notice of this man. Well it’s always going to be tough to be seen as dangerous batsmen, especially when you’re in the same side as AB DeVilliers.

The best thing about tournaments like this one is that it help other players get noticed that even we might have failed to notice. Regardless who plays in this tournament, the tournament it self plans to be a cracker.

New Zealand’s ‘Mr Anderson’ Proves To Be ‘The One’ For New Zealand As The Kiwis Win In Style

New Zealand's Corey Anderson hit a brilliant 75 off 40 balls which set up a convinving 98 run win.

New Zealand’s Corey Anderson hit a brilliant 75 off 40 balls which set up a convincing 98 run win.

New Zealand carried on their recent impressive form with another emphatic win over Sri Lanka to get their World Cup campaign off to the best possible start. The Kiwis dominated from the off against their Asian opponents, as Sri Lanka’s miserable form against the Black Caps continued.

It was the visitors Sri Lanka who won the toss and they decided to field, which possible could be argued turned out to be a very bad decision.

The co-hosts couldn’t have made a better start and the opening pair of Martin Guptil and captain Brendan McCullum cashed in on some very charitable bowling. The first wicket would actually put on 100 for the first wicket ,it actually came as a surprise when the first wicket did fall. Brendan McCullum who tore into the Sri Lankan was the first wicket to fall, the captain was caught by Jeevan Mendis off the bowling of Rangana Herath.

After the departure of their captain New Zealand’s scoring slowed dramatically at that point. Martin Guptill and the new batsmen Kane Williamson in particular were having issues with Sri Lanka’s tight bowling. The pressure further intensified when Martin Guptil, who played a brilliant anchor role to McCullum, departed for 49.

The Black caps who enjoyed a 4-2 series success before the start of the World Cup were in danger of letting a position of utter dominance slip through their fingers. A third wicket which was worth 57 looked to have rebuilt the innings – but when two wickets fell with out a run being scored, New Zealand were back under pressure.

A 65 run fifth wicket partnership allowed New Zealand to steady a rocking ship. First Grant Elliott (29 off 34 balls) and the normally attacking Luke Ronchi (29 off 32 balls) reigned in attacking instincts to allow Corey Anderson (75 off 46 balls) to go on a boundary hitting spree which included 8 fours and 2 sixes.

Those contributions allowed the Black Caps to regain a stranglehold on this match. The co-hosts ended up racking 331-6. Considering New Zealand at one stage were 193-4, you have got to say that’s a pretty decent effort.

For Sri Lanka it was definitely a case of what could have been. Lasith Malinga who has just come back from a long injury layoff understandably looked rusty and wasn’t his usual ‘slinger’ self. Malinga’s opening bowling partner Nuwan Kulasekra was just as disappointing. Such was the struggles of Sri Lanka’s opening bowling attack that nearly half of New Zealand’s runs came of Malinga and Kulasekra’s bowling.

The 1996 World champions were already up against it even before their innings commenced. One might not blame Sri Lanka for thinking “here we go again”. To the visitors credit however they did get their run chase off in solid if not spectacular style. The opening pair of Lahiru Thirimanne and Tilkeratne Dilshan went about their task well.

However when Dilshan was first out, ‘the wheels’ soon came off Sri Lanka’s already very difficult run chase – but with the next batsmen being Kumar Sangakarra, the Asian side must have felt reassured that their chase won’t falter just yet. The Sri Lankan pair of Thirmanne and Sangakarra were starting to frustrate the co hosts – but when the Sri Lankan vice captain Thirimanne was dismissed off the bowling of Trent Boult for a well played 67, many dismissed Sri Lanka’s chances.

Those sceptics were to be proved right as five more wickets fell before the score reaching 200. A valiant 46 from Angelo Matthews couldn’t save Sri Lanka – and there doomed run chase ended on 233.

A great start then from the co-hosts New Zealand who look like they have most definitely picked up from where they have left off. As for Sri Lanka its another disappointing defeat and although this defeat is disappointing it’s not ‘the end of the world’ just yet. A game Afghanistan next Saturday would be a good game for the Sri Lankan’s – but even they won’t be easy.

As for New Zealand they face Scotland in a game what could strengthen their position in the World Cup.

New Zealand Vs Sri Lanka Match Report

Kane Williamson scored a quite brilliant 242 not out as he and BJ Watling shared a record breaking 351 sixth wicket partnership

Kane Williamson scored a quite brilliant 242 not out as he and BJ Watling shared a record breaking 351 sixth wicket partnership

Kumar Sangakarra’s double century which took him one short of Don Bradman’s all time record of 12 wasn’t the only milestone to be reached in the match between New Zealand and Sri Lanka. Vice Captain Kane Williamson and BJ Wattling yet again was involved in a record sixth partnership in test matches .

New Zealand who came into this game looking to seal the two match series were unchanged just like Sri Lanka were. The Asian side who came into 1-0 down were looking from inspiration from Angelo Matthews and veteran Kumar Sangakarra no doubt.

Sri Lanka won the toss and were no looking to get an early breakthrough , and they duly did. Tom Latham was the first man to go for six, Prasanna Jayawardena taking the catch behind the stumps off the bowling of Lakmal.

The score at that point was 31-1, and the new batsmen was Kane Williamson who would go on to make a telling contribution in the match. The second wicket pair of Hamish Rutherford and Kane Williamson put on 31 for the second as well. Rutherford was going along nicely and was just starting to get into his stride with some glorious drives.

It was actually a bit of a surprise when the New Zealand opener Rutherford nicked a ball to wicketkeeper Jayawardena who took his second catch of the match. Ross Taylor who came to the crease did accompany Williamson very well, until the former Kiwi’s captain dragged back onto his stumps for a attractive looking 35. A procession of wickets fell including captain Brendan McCullum for a duck after the former wicketkeeper also dragged back onto his stumps.

Kane Williamson did make a battling 69 as he tried to ‘anchor’ the innings for New Zealand – but after the fall of the third wicket, the other seven wickets were lost with just 80 runs scored. The Black Caps after being 141-3 crumbled to 221 all out.

The tourists decision to field look to be a good one, and Sri Lanka were no doubt looking to advantage of such a low first innings total. The Asian Side though couldn’t have got their innings to a worse of a start. The Sri Lanka’s were five down with only 78 on the board – but a crucial 130 stand between the master Kumar Sanagakarra and the protégé Dinesh Chandimal, allowed the defending T20 world champions to regain the initiative.

When Chandimal was dismissed it was down to the veteran Kumar Sanagakarra to farm the strike – and the 37 year old did it expertly as Sri Lanka were all out for 356, a lead of 135. Sangakarra in the process is now only one career double behind Don Bradman’s all time record of 12.

After allowing the visitors to gain a 135 lead, New Zealand knew that they were going to have to perform much better with the bat this time around. The Kiwi’s , second time around produced a much better showing. The first wicket pair of Tom Latham and Hamish Rutherford put up a much better resistance than they did in the first innings.

The opening pair put on 75 for the first wicket – but the first wicket partnership ended when Hamish Rutherford was caught by Dinesh Chandimal. Tom Latham fell soon after with just another three to the board and Ross Taylor was out with out scoring, pandaemonium in the New Zealand batting line up was ensuing.

Skipper Brendan McCullum and vice captain Kane Williamson put on a 43 run fourth wicket partnership which did allow a recovery of sorts – but when McCullum was trapped for 22 by Dhamika Prassad and Jimmy Neesham suffered the same feat at the hands of Pradeep, New Zealand at this stage were in trouble at 159-5.

‘Cometh the hour cometh the man they say’ and for New Zealand it was Kane Williamson. Williamson who was at the other end while the other wickets fell, eventually had an ally in wicketkeeper BJ Watling. The New Zealand pair ended up putting on a test record 365 for the sixth wicket, I guess BJ Watling just loves being involved in record breaking partnerships – it was only last year that the wicketkeeper batsmen was involved in the previous sixth wicket record stand with his captain BJ Watling. The difference here was that this partnership was unbroken.

Brendan McCullum decided that the Sri Lankan’s had endured enough torture – and decided to declare with New Zealand’s batting card reading 524-5, a very impressive feat considering the Black caps were 159-5 at one stage.

The game had been turned on it’s head, Sri Lanka who were at one stage in control of the game, again were firmly on the back foot. The priority was surely survival – but the Sri Lankan’s second innings was just as doomed as their first.

Four wickets fell before the score had even reached 100, in fact the first wicket partnership of 42 was the highest of their second innings. The Sri Lankan score card was depressing reading for Sri Lanka fans. Several players fell for single figures including double hundred hero Kumar Sangakarra who was out for just five.

Sangakarra’s partner in the impressive 130 sixth wicket stand Dinesh Chandimal didn’t fair much better and was out for 13. In fact there were only two players to score 50’s , Kaushal Silva scored 50 and vice-captain Lahiru Thirimane top scored with 62 – but sadly for Sri Lankan fans their team crumbled badly and were all out for a disappointing 196 to lose by 193 runs.

New Zealand then took this series 2-0 to keep their brilliant form of late going, The Kiwi’s have now only lost twice in 15 tests, as for Sri Lanka this test series defeat isn’t ideal preparation for the cricket world cup which starts on the 7th February.

Pakistan Vs New Zealand Second T20 Match Report

A crucial 32 from captain Kane Williamson helped New Zealand square the T20 series 1-1

A crucial 32 from captain Kane Williamson helped New Zealand square the T20 series 1-1

Pakistan went into this second match of the T20 series looking to win – to secure a 2-0 lead which would win them the series. The Asian side drew the test series last month and were looking to go one better against the Kiwis this time round.

Former world champions Pakistan came into this match making one change, Awais Zia was replaced with test opener Ahmed Shehzhad. Daniel Vettori came in to the side for New Zealand Adam Milne and Mitch McCleneaghan made way for Kyle Mills. Pakistan won the toss, just as they did in the first game – and were looking to restrict the Black Caps to a total which they would be able to chase down.

New Zealand opening pair Anton Devcich and Kane Williamson who is captain of the T20 side helped their side put on a good stand for the opening wicket. In fact the New Zealander’s put on 49 for the first wicket. The Kiwi pair were looking solid, it was bit of a surprise when the first wicket did fall – Devcich the man out, bowled Mohammed Hafeez for 21.

The dismissal of Anton Devcich sparked a mini collapse for New Zealand who lost another three wickets for 29 runs. Just like in the first game the Black caps were in serious danger of not having enough runs on the board to defend their total.

A fifth wicket stand however of 38 helped settle the nerves – but when Tom Latham was fifth man out with the score on only 116, New Zealand didn’t look like they had enough on the board. Another three wickets fell for 20 as New Zealand scraped to 144-8.

Pakistan needed 145 to win the second match which didn’t seem enough considering the batsmen they have at their disposal. Cricket though is a funny old game – just when you think you know what’s going to happen usually the exact opposite happens.

The Pakistani’s got their reply off to a nightmare start. Friday’s hero Sarfraz Ahmed who scored an unbeaten 76 was first out, the wicketkeeper only managed a single before being dismissed. It didn’t get any better for Pakistan who lost wickets at regular intervals. Six Pakistan wickets were down before the score reached 100, when the seventh wicket fell with 104 on the board, Pakistan must have known the game was up.

A late cameo by captain Shahid Afridi made the game closer as a contest – but Afridi’s 28 off just 21 balls was ultimately to little to late. New Zealand closed the match out and dismissed the hosts for 127 which meant the series was all square at 1-1, the one day international series starts on Monday.

Pakistan Vs New Zealand T20 Match Report

Sarfraz Ahmed's quite brilliant 76 off just 64 balls helped Pakistan win the first game of this T20 series.

Sarfraz Ahmed’s quite brilliant 76 off just 64 balls helped Pakistan win the first game of this T20 series.

Pakistan and New Zealand after the drawn test series went into this game looking to build some momentum ahead of the 50 over world cup which is due to start in February,both teams made several changes as both were looking to build some momentum before February’s world cup.

Pakistan had newly re-appointed captain Shahid Afridi back in their side, as well as the inexperienced Harris Sohail, Saad Nasim and Anwar Ali. Pakistan in all made nine changes to their side, only Sarfraz Ahmed and Mohammed Hafeez were retained from the test squad.

As for New Zealand their squad showed several changes as well. The Kiwi’s gave starts to Anton Devcich, Matt Henry and Adam Milne, the rest of the New Zealand side did show other changes as well, with most notably Brendan McCullum not being in the side. There was a starting berth for Brendan’s brother Nathan McCullum however and a recall for Martin Guptil.

It was Pakistan who won the toss in this match and they decided to field – and their decision seemed justified as New Zealand slumped to 61-4. Martin Guptil, new boy Anton devcich, Ross Taylor and skipper Kane Williamson were all back in the pavilion.

A brief rally from New Zealand saw the Black Caps put on 51 for the sixth wicket – but when Corey Anderson was out for a very entertaining 48 off just 37 balls, the game seemed up for the Kiwi’s. The score at that point was 112-5, sadly for New Zealand their innings didn’t get any better. The New Zealander’s in the end stuttered to 135-7.

Corey Anderson’s brilliant 48 was off just 37 balls and included four maximums, looked to be in a losing cause. Anderson did have support from Luke Ronchi, the New Zealand wicketkeeper scored an attacking 33 off just 28 balls.

There was also a good contribution at the top of the order from Martin Guptil who scored a near run ball 32 – but other than that the New Zealand scored card contained to many low scoring contributions- and this is what left New Zealand potentially 15- 20 runs short.

Pakistan went into this run chase with the knowledge that they have some very good T20 batsmen in their side. The Pakistani batting line up included Umar Akmal, Awais Zia who is seen as the ‘new boom boom’ and of course the original ‘boom boom’ himself Shahid Afridi.

With such an impressive batting line up, Pakistan would have been confident of their chances of winning this game. Pakistan started their run chase with the opening pairing of Sarfraz Ahmed and Awais Zia. The Pakistani opening pair put on 51 for the first wicket.

The opening stand was broken by a run out by Anton Devcich, at that point Pakistan seemed to be in control – but after another run out, this time Mohammed Hafeez being run out by Luke Ronchi – Pakistan looked like they were stuttering a little bit in this run chase.

A 37 run third wicket stand however did manage to take the sting out of the game it seemed – but when new boy Harris Sohail was out caught by Nathan McCullum off the bowling of Mitchell McClenaghan, it looked there was another twist in the tale.

A fourth wicket stand of 43 between Umar Akmal and Sarfraz Ahmed, who hit a quite brilliant 76 off just 64 balls, which included eight 4’s and two 6’s ended the game as a contest as Pakistan won by seven wickets. Pakistan lead the two match T20 series 1-0, the second game is on Friday.

Pakistan And New Zealand Play Out Stalemate

Ross Taylor played a key part in helping New Zealand to save the seconmd test.

Ross Taylor played a key part in helping New Zealand to save the seconmd test.

Pakistan’s cricketers who have been in impressive form of late, were looking to carry on their good form against New Zealand in the second test. The ‘hosts’ outplayed the Kiwis in the first game as Pakistan won by 248 runs. New Zealand were looking to get revenge in this one.

The New Zealanders batted first and got their innings off to a solid start. Brendan McCullum and Tom Latham put on 77 for the first wicket – but the opening partnership was ended by debutant Ehsan Adil, Adil had New Zealand captain McCullum caught for an attractive looking 43. The former wicket keeper hit four 4’s and two sixes in his knock.

Pakistan were sensing ‘blood’ after breaking the first wicket partnership – but Kane Williamson and Latham had other ideas. The pair put on a handy 76 run stand as New Zealand were looking to regroup after the loss of their captain. Zulfiquar Babar had other ideas – and bowled Williamson for 32.

Frustratingly for the Pakistani’s New Zealand were starting to take control of this match with some useful partnerships. Another 70 run stand the Kiwis lead them 200 for the loss of just three wickets. Pakistan at this point were probably looking to restrict New Zealand to a total they could get close to when their time comes to bat.

A mini collapse for the Black caps saw Tom Latham and Corey Anderson both return to the pavilion with the score stuck on 245. At this point Pakistan must have been ‘licking’ their lips as most of New Zealand’s top order was back in the pavilion. New Zealand in this game though seemed to be ‘up for the fight’ .

After being 278-6 at one stage many might have expected New Zealand to crumble – especially after the first game. To the Black caps’ credit they battled to a respectable 403 all out, Pakistan have a battle on their hands all over a sudden.

The Pakistani’s new they needed a ‘special effort’ just to stay in this game, they couldn’t have got off to the worst possible start as the new opening pair of Taufeeq Umar and Maqsood were both dismissed cheaply.

New Zealand at this point must have thought that they have got Pakistan right where they want them – but a third wicket stand of 113 halted the Kiwis’ charge. Misbah Ul-Haq the Pakistani captain was next and made an attractive looking 28 before being caught by Ross Taylor off the bowling Trent Boult. At that point they were 195-4

Pakistan were slowly getting there way back into this game – but the problem was they were losing to many wickets for their own liking. The 1992 world champions had a slight ‘wobble’ and slipped to 287-8 – but thankfully for Pakistan they can call on the services of wicket-keeper batsmen Sarfraz Ahmed – and hundred for Ahmed helped Pakistan to 393 all out, which left them just 10 behind New Zealand’s first innings score.

The second innings wasn’t as good for New Zealand as the first and the Kiwi’s lost four wickets before the score even got to 100. The New Zealander’s with a 46 run fifth wicket stand and a 60 run sixth wicket stand managed to get a lead of over 200 at that point (236 to be precise). The eight wicket fell two runs later and when the ninth wicket fell with the score at 250, New Zealand opted to declare.

With a lead of 260 which was in large thanks to Ross Taylor’s century ,was a testing score – especially for a fourth and innings and for a pitch like Dubai.
To cap a disappointing match Taufeeq Umar in Pakistan’s second innings was dismissed cheaply. With Pakistan looking to save the game – the Pakistani’s couldn’t have got off to a worst possible start. A second wicket stand of 62 looked to have taken the sting out of the game – but another two wickets fell with only three more runs scored.

Pakistan were wobbling and a New Zealand win seemed a distinct possibility. Out came ‘Pakistan’s Mr Reliable’ Younus Khan and talk of a New Zealand win seemed to have gone – but when Khan was out caught by Ross Taylor off the bowling of Mark Craig, New Zealand’s hopes of a win were renewed with that wicket.

Sadly for New Zealand there was to be no more drama as a sixth wicket stand of 43 between Asad Shafiq and Sarfraz Ahmed ensured that Pakistan drew the ,match and still have there 1-0 series lead intact.

The third and final test starts on Wednesday.

Pakistan Thrash New Zealand To Win First Test

Ahmed Shehzad scored a brilliant 176 which laid the foundations for Pakistan's emphatic win.

Ahmed Shehzad scored a brilliant 176 which laid the foundations for Pakistan’s emphatic win.

The ‘steam train’ that is Pakistan, stream rolled another opponent, this time it was New Zealand on the receiving end. The 1992 world champions were again very impressive as the Asian sides bowlers and batmen contributed in what turned out to be a big win in the end.

On the back of a first series win over the Australian’s in the last series, Pakistan played New Zealand with confidence evidently high after after the series win of a few weeks ago. The Kiwis who boast of a batting line up of Brendan McCullum, Tom Latham, Ross Taylor and wicket keeper BJ Watling, would put a better performance than what Australia did.

Pakistan batted first, as is the way with the Pakistani’s way these days. Pakistan couldn’t have got to a better start, Pakistan’s openers really putting New Zealand’s bowlers to the sword. The opening pair of Mohammed Hafeez and Ahmed Shehzhad, potentially took the game from new Zealand with an impressive opening stand 178.

New Zealand didn’t look like they were going to take a wicket any time soon as the Kiwis toiled, even former wicket keeper Brendan McCullum bowled a few overs. It was over real surprise almost when the first wicket stand was broken with the score on 178. Mohammed Hafeez was the first wicket to fall, the veteran all-rounder falling just on what would have been a very well deserved 100, Hafeez was caught and bowled for 96.

The Kiwis must have thought this would ‘open up the flood gates’ sadly though for New Zealand a second wicket stand of 169, only strengthened Pakistan’s position. A third wicket fell soon after the second wicket fell- but for New Zealand it was becoming a case of damaged limitation. If two century partnerships weren’t enough, Pakistan put on another century stand- this time it was for 187. Veterans Misbah Ul-Haq and Younus Khan both hit unbeaten centuries. Ahmed Shehzhad’s quite brilliant 176 also deserves a mention.

Pakistan spared New Zealand more misery, declared on 566-3. New Zealand got their innings off to a bad start, three wickets were down before the 50 was up. Despite a century for Tom Latham, only Corey Anderson and Ish Sodhi scored any kind of runs.

With a batting line up of the quality of New Zealand’s, to be all out for 262 is very disappointing. Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor and Jimmy Neesham – between them scored some 14 runs between them. For players of that quality those stats make depressing reading.

Pakistan with a 304 lead after the first innings looked to press their advantage home- and they duly did. The Pakistani’s somewhat spared New Zealand’s bowlers this time, Pakistan declared on 175-2- looking to force a victory. Mohammed Hafeez did manage to score a 100 in that time which came off only 130 balls.

Chasing a mammoth 479 to win, New Zealand would have been no doubt first and foremost looking to save the game. To compound a disappointing game for Brendan McCullum’s high standards, the skipper was out for 39 in the second innings, Yasir Shah having the New Zealand skipper trapped lbw.

McCullum’s opening partner Latham was first out with the score on 57, falling 4 runs before the fall of the second wicket. In comparison to the first innings, New Zealand were doing comparatively worse it could be argued- as seven wickets had fallen before 150 were on the board for New Zealand.

Jimmy Neesham, Corey Anderson, BJ Watling and kane Williamson , to name some New Zealand batsmen – were all back in the pavilion. If New Zealand were to have any chance of saving this game, ideally they needed someone with the ‘technical ability’ of Kane Williamson.

With the score at 138-8, the Pakistani’s must have sensed that a victory was almost imminent- but ironically New Zealand’s low order showed the top- order how it’s done. A battling 9 wicket stand of 39, halted what many could argue was ‘the inevitable’ . When Mark Craig was bowled by Yasir Shah for 28, Pakistan must have thought finally the victory was theirs.

What was panning out to be a ‘great escape’ seemed more possible as Ish Sodhi who scored a reputable 25 in the first innings, scored a fifty in this innings. Accompanied by number 11 Trent Boult who scored 19, the last wicket pair put on a stubborn last wicket stand of 50 . This Kiwi pair looked to do the near impossible and save a match that they have been for long periods out played in.

Sadly though for New Zealand fans, a fairytale ending to this match wasn’t on the cards. Imran khan finally ending the match by trapping Ish Sodhi for a battling 63. New Zealand will be hoping to bounce back in the next test which starts on Monday 17th November.

Pakistan Vs New Zealand Day 1 Review

Ahmed Shehzad scored a brilliant 126 and was unbeaten at the close of play.

Ahmed Shehzad scored a brilliant 126 and was unbeaten at the close of play.

Pakistan maintained there brilliant form of late with a commanding first day against New Zealand. Pakistan’s opening pair did most of the damage with an impressive stand of 178, that stand was eventually broken however with Corey Anderson having Mohammed Hafeez caught and bowled for 96.

Pakistan didn’t allow that setback to affect them and the 2nd wicket pairing of Azhar Ali and Ahmed Shehzad put un an unbroken stand of 91. Sadly for New Zealand the one wicket was as good as it got for them as they toiled in the field.

Despite being the only Kiwi to get a wicket, Anderson’s seven overs went for 31 runs. Although there is still a lot of cricket to be played in this match, the Kiwis will be desperate to make some early inroads tomorrow so they go further behind in this match.

With a batting line up of Younus khan, Misbah Ul-Haq and Sarfraz Ahmed to come, New Zealand will know that they will need to gain the ascendancy in this game – if they don’t this game could be out of their grasp before they know it.