Pakistan Register First ODI Series Win Over New Zealand In 12 years

Pakistan Register First ODI Series Win Over New Zealand In 12 years

Karachi: Pakistan registered their first one-day international series win over New Zealand in 12 years with a hard-fought 26-run victory in the third ODI match in Karachi on Wednesday.

After winning the toss, New Zealand elected to bowl first and managed to restrict Pakistan to 287-6.Pakistan’s cricketers celebrate after winning the series against New Zealand [Asif Hassan/AFP]

Earlier, New Zealand started well by getting the in-form opener Fakhar Zaman caught off Matt Henry for 19.

Zaman, who had scored three hundreds in his last three ODI innings, had shaped up well before his fall, leaving it to Haq and Azam to steady the innings during their 108-run second-wicket stand.

Azam hit three fours and a six before he chopped one onto his stumps off Henry.

Haq was bowled by pacer Adam Milne in the 38th over.

Abdullah Shafique struggled again as he managed just 19, but Agha Salman (31) helped Mohammad Rizwan (32) add 54 runs for the fifth wicket to lift the total.

In the final overs, Mohammad Nawaz and Shadab Khan also chipped in with 11 and 21 not out respectively.

Henry was the best bowler for New Zealand, taking three wickets for 54 runs.

In their run-chase, New Zealand raced to 99 for one after 20 overs before Pakistan bowlers put the brakes on the scoring-rate, allowing New Zealand to score 92 runs in the next 20 overs. This meant the visitors needed 97 runs in the last 10 overs and despite fielding lapses, this proved to be a tough task as they managed only 70 runs to be dismissed for 261 in 49.1 overs.

Opener Tom Blundell struck 78-ball 65 with seven fours featured in three useful partnerships. After adding 83 runs for the first wicket with Will Young (33), he added 30 runs from 40 balls for the second wicket with Daryl Mitchell (21) and 14 runs for the third wicket in 21 balls with Tom Latham (45).

Debutant Cole McConchie scored 64 not out (45 balls, six fours, two sixes) and put on 25 runs (34 balls) for the sixth wicket with Latham, 31 runs (21 balls) for the seventh wicket with Adam Milne, 19 runs (14 balls) for the eighth wicket with Henry Shipley and 12 runs (9 balls) for the ninth wicket with Ish Sodhi.

For Pakistan, Naseem Shah, Mohammad Wasim Junior and Shaheen Shah Afridi took two wickets apiece.

Scores in brief

Pakistan won by 26 runs, 3rd ODI.

Pakistan 287-6, 50 overs (Imam-ul-Haq 90, Babar Azam 54, Mohammad Rizwan 32, Salman Ali Agha 31, Shadab Khan 21 not out; Matt Henry 3-54)

New Zealand 261 all-out, 49.1 overs (Tom Blundell 65, Cole McConchie 64 not out, Tom Latham 45, Will Young 33, Daryl Mitchell 21; Naseem Shah 2-42, Mohammad Wasim Junior 2-50, Shaheen Shah Afridi 2-53)

Player of the match – Imam-ul-Haq (Pakistan)

Pakistan, who won the first two matches by five and seven wickets respectively in Rawalpindi, took an unassailable 3-0 lead in the five-match series.

The last two matches are on Friday and Sunday, also in Karachi.

Pakistan’s last ODI series win over New Zealand was in 2011 and since then they had lost six of the seven series, with one drawn.

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