Pakistan eyes victory in first Test against New Zealand

Pakistan eyes victory in first Test against New Zealand

Williamson brought up his fifty but got out for 63 runs as soon as Nicholls lost his wicket.

For Pakistan, Babar Azam has hit a purple patch and he along with Imam Ul Haq, Mohammad Hafeez and Azhar Ali will be the leading batsmen for Pakistan. It is a habit New Zealand will look to keep Pakistan shackled to, and with 139 still to get, success is not an impossibility. Azhar carried his team to the brink and reviewed the decision but replays confirmed Patel's five-bag and sparked jubilant scenes. A collective bowling performance meant New Zealand couldn't even a get a proper start to the Test series which was expected to pose lots of questions on their composure.

The first hour and a half was underlined by utter domination from Pakistan's bowlers.

This isn't a Test designed for predictions, but a gruelling day where momentum ebbed and flowed ended with Pakistan in a strong position to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match Test series. Bilal Asif contained run-scoring in his first spell while Abbas at the other end gave the batsmen no room to breathe either, and it appeared something had to give. They beat the visitors multiple times, but while they won the battles, the batting duo won the war.

Earlier, Hasan's twin blows in five deliveries toppled New Zealand's top order as Pakistan reduced the visitors to 108-4. Hasan took two in one over as Ross Taylor and Raval also made their way back, and the upshot of a session that had begun with New Zealand firmly in charge ended by Pakistan re-establishing the slim advantage they have held over their opponents.

Haris Sohail followed three balls later, caught and bowled off a Sodhi full toss for four. They kept poking and prodding at the well-settled duo, and were ultimately rewarded nine overs later, when Yasir drew Nicholls' edge in the 90th over. Yasir's next scalp was Colin de Grandhomme, who was trapped LBW after adding just three runs to the total.

New Zealand's players grab the stumps and digest a remarkable test victory, with man of the match Ajaz Patel second from right. Yasir's third scalp of the session came in the form of Watling, who walked off after notching up his 15th half-century in Test cricket.

Imam-ul-Haq was 25 not out and Mohammad Hafeez was eight not out were at the crease and Pakistan will need another 139 runs with all ten wickets and two days to play after New Zealand were dismissed for 249 in their second innings.

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