NZ vs PAK: Phillips knock seals thrilling series win for NZ against Pakistan

Glenn Phillips delivered a counterattacking masterpiece to wrest the game – and the series – from Pakistan’s clutches, clattering an unbeaten 63 off 42 balls to take New Zealand over in their pursuit of 281. By two wickets, New Zealand 281 for 8 (Phillips 63*, Williamson 53, Conway 52, Salman 2-42) defeated Pakistan 280 for 9 (Fakhar 101, Rizwan 77, Southee 3-56).

When the visitors needed another 76 from 71 deliveries with just four wickets in hand, the hosts had one hand on the series trophy. Phillips, who was already on 16 from 8 balls after hitting two sixes, clinched New Zealand’s first ODI series triumph over Pakistan on home soil with 11 balls to go.

Phillips Destroys Fakahr Zaman Century

Phillips knock seals thrilling series win for NZ against Pakistan-1

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Despite an uneasy stomach, Phillips smashed four fours and sixes to change the contest in a handful of overs. When he chipped Mohammad Wasim over midwicket for four, New Zealand needed 75 from the last 69 balls, before swinging Haris Rauf for six over deep midwicket in the following over. Wasim then attempted the slower ball, which was put outside of long-on for six more. As a consequence, with nine overs remaining, New Zealand required fewer than a run per ball, at which time Phillips smashed Rauf over extra cover for four more runs.

In the 43rd over, he hit fifty off 28 deliveries, New Zealand’s second-fastest against Pakistan in ODIs. And, as if to extinguish Pakistan’s final glimmer of hope, Mohammad Rizwan dropped Phillips following the ball, unable to hang on as a short one from Usama Mir spun away and took the outside edge. If it had been taken, New Zealand would have been in a difficult scenario, needing 35 runs from seven overs with three wickets in hand from Mitchell Santner and the tail.

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The sensation of what could have been remained in the minds of the opponents as they watched Phillips hit the winning runs. New Zealand fell from 160 for 2 to 205 for 6, giving Pakistan a chance. Kane Williamson and Devon Conway, who contributed 75 for the second wicket, set the tone for their pursuit. Conway was caught in the 31st over after slicing to point off Agha Salman, who also caught Daryl Mitchell. As New Zealand lost their way, Williamson was run out for 53, followed by Bracewell and Tom Latham chopping on.

Fakhar’s hundred and Rizwan’s fifty, In vain

Earlier in the day, Pakistan had three-part innings: down to 21 for 2, they required Fakhar Zaman and Rizwan to bail them out with a 153-run partnership before Salman took over in the death. Fakhar scored 101 off 122 balls in innings not often associated with him, while Rizwan succumbed to a fast 77 off 74 balls. Before Salman smashed four fours and a six in 45 innings, they were the only major contributions from the top five.

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When Ish Sodhi cleaned up Rizwan with a googly in the 34th over, at least 300 seemed probable, but frequent wickets held the hosts in check on a non-turning surface. Pakistan had already lost Shan Masood-who was playing his first ODI since March 2019-and Babar Azam after Williamson appealed a not-out ruling against Masood and Latham stumped Babar for the third time in as many outings. Before Babar went for the turn and lost his footing on the crease, Williamson seemed to be the only one who thought Masood had edged behind.

This meant Fakhar and Rizwan had to start again. Williamson had introduced spin as early as the fifth over, with Fakhar breaking the shackles in the tenth over when he tickled and punched Santner for fours. Overall, the left-hander was content to merely push it about, while Rizwan was busy at the crease.

And after Rizwan fell in the 34th over, New Zealand’s replacement fielders were involved in nearly all of the wickets that followed: Henry Nicholls ran Fakhar and Haris Sohail out, and caught Mir at deep midwicket, while Doug Bracewell sent Salman back 45 when the batter holed out to deep square leg.

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As if to repay the favour, Pakistan’s replacement Tayyab Tahir ran Finn Allen out to give his team the lead. But, in the end, Phillips would have the ultimate word, erasing Fakhar’s century, Rizwan’s offensive knock, and maybe everything else that had transpired on the tour.


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