T20 World Cup, PAK vs NZ: Haris Rauf shines as Pakistan beats New Zealand by 5 wickets | Cricket News


Pacer Haris Rauf led a clinical bowling demonstration with an excellent four-wicket run ahead of the onslaught of Shoaib Malik and Asif Ali as Pakistan took their “revenge” on New Zealand for a recent snub off the field with a victory at five wickets in the T20 World Cup on Tuesday. Most top notch hitters except for opener Mohammad Rizwan (33) struggled, but experienced Malik (26 not on 20 balls) and number seven Ali (27 not on 12) thrived towards the end with a 48-partnership run for the sixth wicket to bring Pakistan home with eight balls to spare. It was Pakistan’s second consecutive victory after its complete 10-wicket victory over India on Sunday.

The New Zealand side, playing their first game, had recently withdrawn from a scheduled series against Pakistan after landing there, citing a security threat that the host nation said did not exist.

Chasing 135 for a win, captain Babar Azam (9) and Rizwan got off to a good start, but struggled to get the leads and limits as the chase progressed. Azam was not at his best compared to his brilliant 68 undefeated against India and was out in sixth, beaten by Tim Southee, who secured his 100th wicket at the T20 Internationals.

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Points weren’t easy for Pakistan at this point as they hit 30 to 1 at the end of the power play and they got another shock as Fakhar Zaman (11) was LBW trapped by Ish Sodhi in the ninth . Former captain Mohammad Hafeez hoisted James Neesham for a six as soon as he came out as Pakistan reached 58 for 2 at the halfway point.

But, in the next step, he came out with Devon Conway taking a superb diving catch near the limit ropes of Mitchell Santner’s bowling alley. New Zealand were back in the game with Rizwan, who had scored 79 goals against India, trapped LBW by Sodhi in the 12th. After a few relatively calm overs, Trent Boult got his first wicket by getting rid of Imad Wasim (11) in the 15th.

But from there Pakistan changed the scenario of the match, courtesy of Malik and Asif Ali. Pakistan needed 44 points from the last five overs and Ali came who beat Southee for two consecutive sixes in the 17th to tip the game in their favor.

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Malik hit a six and a four in the next over before Ali set the Sharjah sky on fire with a six and hit the winning points – a two – to take Pakistan to 135 for 5 in 18.4 overs.

Earlier, Rauf led the bowling attack with four wickets as Pakistan limited New Zealand to a modest total. The Kiwis have had all kinds of trouble after being asked to strike in the face of a disciplined Pakistani bowling attack with first scorer Daryl Mitchell and Conway with 27 apiece and captain Kane Williamson contributing 25.

New Zealand couldn’t have a single substantial partnership, the highest being the 36-innings opening grandstand between Mitchell and Martin Guptill (17). Shaheen Afridi, Imad Wasim and Mohammad Hafeez also took a wicket each for Pakistan.

Afridi, who rocked the Indian First Order in Pakistan’s victory over India, got the swing in the opening which was a first. But Mitchell hit a four on his second that gave up eight runs. Mitchell then hoisted Hasan Ali for a six as New Zealand looked to take the lead.

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But they couldn’t come out of the power play unscathed as Rauf uprooted Guptill’s antlers after the ball deflected the batter’s pads.

Mitchell paid the price for taking one too many as he found himself at Fakhar Zaman near the ropes after smashing an Imad six in the ninth. New hitter James Neesham didn’t last long as he was out for 1 in the next over Hafeez as New Zealand hit 60 for three at the halfway point.


The Kiwis hit the gas and took 25 points from the 12th and 13th overs with Williamson crushing Hafeez for a six and a four, even as Conway beat Shadab Khan for three straight limits. But Kiwi’s innings took a turn after Williamson was exhausted in the 14th as Hasan Ali’s brilliant direct throw on his own bowling cleared the bonds.

New Zealand could not reach the 100 point mark until the end of the 15th and Conway and Glenn Phillips (13) came out within three balls in the 18th knocked down by Rauf.

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