Abu Dhabi (November 19, 2018): New Zealand beat Pakistan by four runs in a sensational finish to the fourth day in Abu Dhabi on Monday, taking a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
Pakistan were just four runs away from victory when their last man standing, Azhar Ali, failed to take the team to the other side and fell lbw.
Set 176 to win, Pakistan were bowled out for 171 with debutant left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel finishing with 5-59 and fast bowler Neil Wagner taking 2-27.
Azhar Ali scored 65 runs off 136 balls, the highest scorer in Pakistan’s wobbly second innings on the fourth day of play. while Asad Shafiq made 45.
Shafiq was caught behind to left-arm paceman Neil Wagner after lifting Pakistan from a perilous 48-3 since resuming at 37 without loss.Before his dismissal, Shafiq passed a personal milestone of 4,000 Test runs, becoming the 11th Pakistani batsman to do so.
Shafiq and Azhar rescued Pakistan after high drama at the start of the day, when Pakistan lost three quick wickets in the space of just eight runs and as many balls.
Opener Imam-ul-Haq was trapped leg-before to a full length ball by left-arm spinner Ajaz Patel in the fifth over of the day. Imam made 27 with four boundaries.
His fellow opener Mohammad Hafeez then miscued a drive off leg-spinner Ish Sodhi’s next over and was caught in the covers for 10.Haris Sohail followed three balls later, caught and bowled off a Sodhi full toss for four.
Earlier when the fourth day started, Pakistan required only 139 runs to win with 10 wickets were in hand.
The match, however, was spun around by New Zealand’s Aijaz Patel, who took a five-for to cap a brilliant debut performance and win Man of the Match award.
Earlier on Sunday, Pakistan with an impressive start by the openers made 37 in chase of 176 runs to win the first Test after New Zealand were dismissed for 249 in their second innings on the third day in Abu Dhabi.Medium pacer Hasan Ali took his maiden five-wicket haul with 5-45 while leg-spinner Yasir Shah finished with 5-110 — his 14th five-wicket haul in an innings — as New Zealand lost their last six wickets for 29 runs.
BJ Watling (59) and Henry Nicholls (55) added 112 for the fifth wicket.
New Zealand made 153 in their first innings to which Pakistan replied with 227 all out.
The second Test will be in Dubai (November 24-28) and third in Abu Dhabi (December 3-7).