ODI Match Pakistan vs New Zealand: Naseem and the batters set up Pakistan’s decisive victory

Jan 10, 2023

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Mohammad Rizwan (77*), Babar Azam (66), and Fakhar Zaman (56) all struck half-centuries, and Naseem Shah claimed a five-wicket haul to help Pakistan defeat New Zealand in the Karachi ODI by a comfortable margin of six wickets.

Imam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Rizwan shared an alliance of 30 in a little under six overs, giving the home team a strong start on a track that was on the slower side. Imam was defeated by Michael Bracewell, who spooned a straightforward catch to the fielder positioned at mid-on, against the flow of play. At that point, Babar Azam pulled and slog-swept Mitchell Santner to keep Pakistan’s momentum going, while Fakhar Zaman took on Lockie Ferguson, the fastest bowler in New Zealand, with a drive, flick, and cut.

In the 17th over, New Zealand sought a check for an LBW against Babar in an effort to break the stand, but the impact was determined to be outside off. Interestingly, Babar had an LBW call overturned in the previous over Santner had bowled because the ball tracker had predicted the ball would miss leg-stump. Finally, New Zealand ended the dangerous stand in the 23rd over when Bracewell dismissed Fakhar.

As the home team continued to control the needed run rate, Rizwan, who had taken Fakhar’s place at the crease, alternated between rapid runs between the wickets and the occasional drive and flick. Babar dutifully finished out Santner with a double to complete his fifty at the other end. Babar chipped down the track just as Pakistan appeared to be on track to reach the mark, but Glenn Phillips sent the ball down the leg-side, and Latham finished the stumping.

Rizwan played with some maturity having lost his hitting partner and captain, and he found a capable ally in Haris Sohail. The two of them shared a 64-run stand. To score goals, the duo utilized the reverse sweep in addition to playing through the ball’s line. In the end, Southee dismissed Haris for a quick-fire 32 off just 23 balls, but with just 24 runs needed off just five overs, the outcome of the game appeared more or less predetermined. In due course, Agha Salman, who teamed up with Rizwan, put the final touches on the play by tonking Southee over long-on for a six.

Naseem laid the cornerstone for Pakistan’s victory with his amazing 5-for-57 performance. Usama Mir, who was playing in his first international match, contributed as well by taking two wickets. As soon as Naseem castled Devon Conway, Pakistan had made a good impression. Allen used a barrage of shots to temporarily increase the strain on the opposition before losing to Wasim in the eighth over.

When Kane Williamson and Daryl Mitchell appeared to be making progress toward recovery, Pakistan struck once more through Usama’s delivery of a peach that pitched around Williamson’s leg and spun noticeably. Then, the New Zealand skipper’s replacement, Tom Latham, showed off his abilities against spin by fusing the occasional pull and reverse sweep with singles and twos. Mitchell was defeated by Mohammad Nawaz, though, giving Pakistan the opportunity to make a breakthrough at the ideal time. Usama then threw Latham out for a score of 42.

Then, to support the guests, Glenn Phillips (37) and Miichael Bracewell (42-ball 43) stitched a key alliance of 66. A back of the length delivery from Naseem resulted in Phillips being out, with the middle order bat dragging the ball to the mid-off fielder. 

With the removal of Henry Shipley and Bracewell in the same over, Naseem made progress. Santner was out in the last over of the innings, giving the fast bowler a game-high five wickets.

Brief Scores:

New Zealand 255/9 in 50 overs (Michael Bracewell 43; Naseem Shah 5-57) lost to Pakistan 258/4 in 48.1 overs (Mohammad Rizwan 77*, Babar Azam 66; Michael Bracewell 2-44) by six wickets

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