Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Debutant Ajaz Patel carved through Pakistan’s batting line-up with a five-wicket haul as New Zealand secured a nail-biting four-run win in Abu Dhabi.
Starting off the day on 37/0, Pakistan only added three runs to their overnight score before opener Imam-ul-Haq was given out lbw off the bowling of Patel for 27.
Mohammad Hafeez, who opened the batting with Imam, only scored 10 runs before he was caught by Colin de Grandhomme at cover off the bowling of Ish Sodhi.
Sodhi struck again three balls later as he sent Haris Sohail packing for four runs.
With Pakistan having lost three wickets in quick succession, Azhar Ali and Asad Shafiq stabilised the innings with an 82-run partnership before Shafiq was caught behind off the bowling of Neil Wagner for 45.
Once Shafiq was gone, Pakistan began to lose wickets in a hurry, largely due to Patel, as they went from 130/4 to being reduced to 164/9.
With Pakistan 12 runs away from victory at this point and Azhar still at the crease, there was still hope for Pakistan to come out on top.
However, it was New Zealand who ended up triumphing as Pakistan were bowled out for 171 when Patel trapped Azhar lbw for 65, which came off 136 balls and included five boundaries.
Patel was the pick of the bowlers with five wickets, while Sodhi and Wagner claimed two wickets each.
Patel was named Man of the Match.