Kiwis seal dramatic four-run Test victory over Pakistan


In a dramatic turn of events Pakistan slumped from being 130 for 3 to being bowled out for 171 to hand the Black Caps a four-run win.

Asad Shafiq and Azhar Ali saved Pakistan after the drama at the start of today's play, when Pakistan lost three quick wickets in the space of just eight runs and as many balls.

While New Zealand tasted their first win against Pakistan, Ireland are still winless. New Zealand fought to successfully defend the second smallest target in its Test history with Patel and Wagner making the run-chase hard for Pakistan on a wearing wicket. For the most part, it was Pakistan doing the frontrunning, but whenever it appeared they were pulling too far ahead, New Zealand rallied, dragging themselves back into the contest, refusing to lie down.

Patel sparked a mini-collapse at the start when he trapped Imam-ul-Haq leg-before in the fifth over of the day for 27 before Ish Sodhi had Mohammad Hafeez (ten) and Haris Sohail (four) in the same over. Pakistan had a disgusting start after resuming the fourth day on 37-0.

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With 46 runs needed and six wickets in it should still have been a stroll for Pakistan but they lost their last six wickets for 24 runs in a post-lunch period punctuated by a series of loose shots and some rogue running.

Bilal Asif was bowled for a duck as he attempted to slog Patel and Wagner had Yasir Shah caught at slip.

The earlier measure at the crease had been replaced by chaos.

Azhar Ali (65) and Asad Shafiq (45) seemed to have carried Pakistan to victory with an 82-run fourth wicket stand before Wagner broke through just before lunch by having Shafiq caught behind.

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Shafiq and Azhar then took the pressure off by rotating the strike frequently with singles and twos while waiting for the loose deliveries to get boundaries.

Patel's figures were the second best for a New Zealand spinner on debut.

"Our batsmen should have handled it better, given ourselves a bit of time, but we just didn't". They were cautious in their approach but also ensured that the scoreboard kept ticking, as the visitors went into tea with 200 runs on the board with four batsmen back in the hut. New Zealand could make only 153 runs.

The day two of the first Test will begin on Saturday, November 16, 2018, at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.

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