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Yasir Shah's Masterclass Helps Pakistan Level New Zealand Series 1-1

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: November 27, 2018, 5:41 PM IST
Yasir Shah's Masterclass Helps Pakistan Level New Zealand Series 1-1

(image: ICC)

Pakistan made their way back into the three-match Test series against New Zealand in style, winning the second Test at Dubai by innings and 16 runs on Tuesday.

New Zealand put up a better show with the bat in the second innings but their score of 312 wasn’t enough to compensate for their miserable showing in the first innings.

Pakistan had declared at 418/5 in the first innings before a masterclass in spin bowling from Yasir Shah restricted New Zealand to just 90 all out in reply. Pakistan had no hesitation in enforcing the follow-on.

Shah, who ended the first innings with figures of 8/41, was once again the star man for Pakistan in the second innings, taking 6-143 and ending the match with a grand total of 14 wickets.

Shah had dismissed opener Jeet Raval for two before also removing New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson caught behind for 30 to complete his third ten-wicket haul in the match.

Tom Latham and Ross Taylor were at the crease at stumps on Day 3 and there were hopes that the two could put on a big partnership on a pitch that was now easier to bat on.

However, both were back in the shed before lunch and even a fighting half-century from Henry Nicholls was not enough to prevent Pakistan from winning the match.

Nicholls brought up his seventh Test fifty and was unbeaten on 74 at the end of the second session as New Zealand reached 297/7 at tea on the fourth day.

The prospect of avoiding a defeat at the time was still a faraway one the visitors as they were still 31 runs away from avoiding an innings defeat and only had three wickets in hand.

Starting the day at 131-2, Pakistan were quick to break up the overnight partnership when Latham edged one off Ali to Sarfraz Ahmed.

The big breakthrough for Pakistan came just before lunch when Bilal Asif got the wicket of Taylor, whose top-edge off a sweep shot was smartly collected by Yasir Shah.

The onus of putting together a big partnership was now on Nicholls and BJ Watling. The two managed to put together a 57-run stand that frustrated Pakistan but was never going to be enough to get their team out of trouble.

Colin de Grandhomme fell soon thereafter as he swung across the line of a straight one to Ali, who celebrated in trademark style.

Ish Sodhi quickly followed suit and with Nicholls being the only specialist batsman left, the onus was on him to string something together with the lower order in the final session.

Yet the beginning of the end came in the fourth over after tea when Ali got rid of Nicholls with an absolute peach of a ball that cannoned into the top of off stump.

Nicholls looked back, held still for a few seconds and then began walking back to the pavilion, almost knowing that his dismissal meant the end of the away side’s resistance.

That proved to be the case as Shah cleaned up Neil Wagner and Trent Boult shortly to ensure the match ended without any more fuss.
First Published: November 27, 2018, 5:41 PM IST

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