Pakistan’s unpredictability at the fore again, lose to New Zealand by 4 runs

By: Sports Desk |

Published: November 19, 2018 5:06:20 pm

Azhar Ali was the last wicket to fall for Pakistan against New Zealand. (Source: AP)

One adjective associated with the Pakistan cricket team is that of being ‘unpredictable’. It is not always the case that it is used in a positive light as they’ve been equally culpable for horrible collapses to lose matches where they were more likely to win. Last year, they failed to chase down 136 runs at their adopted home in the UAE against Sri Lanka to be bowled out for 114 runs.

On Monday (November 19), Pakistan suffered yet another embarrassing collapse to go down to New Zealand in the opening Test. Chasing 176 to win, Pakistan looked strong contenders for the win and despite losing three early wickets, Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq had restored balance. Their 82-run stand took Pakistan to 130/3 before Shafiq perished for 45. The equation at this stage saw Pakistan needing 46 runs with six wickets in hand – a modest ask by any standards.

REPORT | Pakistan vs New Zealand 1st Test: Ajaz Patel scalps five as Kiwis beat Pakistan by 4 runs

Azhar Ali (65) stayed up until the end to try and steer the side home as Pakistan suffered a miserable lower order collapse with three players going back after another with ducks to their name. With the DRS call going in New Zealand’s favour, Azhar became the last to be dismissed and the Kiwis won by four runs for a tense finish at he Sheikh Zayed Stadium. Large portion of the credit would go to the Man of the Match Ajaz Patel who claimed a fifer in the second innings on his debut. Here’s how the cricketing world reacted to the dramatic finish:

The second Test will be played in Dubai from November 24-28 before the teams return to Abu Dhabi for the final Test from Dec. 3-7.

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