Pakistan makes 246-9 in 2nd ODI vs. New Zealand
NELSON, New Zealand (AP) Mohammad Hafeez and tailenders Hasan Ali and Shadab Khan made half centuries as Pakistan struggled to 246-9, batting first after winning the toss on Tuesday in the second one-day international against New Zealand.
In a repeat of the first international, which New Zealand won by 61 runs under the Duckworth-Lewis system, Pakistan was always under pressure after losing early wickets and fell short of a par score at Saxton Oval where teams which bat first in ODIs average 260.
Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed chose to bowl in the first match at the Basin Reserve and New Zealand went on to score 315-7 and to cruise to victory in a rain-affected match in which Pakistan lost two wickets in its first over.
On Tuesday Sarfraz took the opposite tack and chose to bat first but the result was the same. Pakistan lost openers Azhar Ali and Imam-ul-Haq, playing in place of the injured Fakhar Zaman, with only 14 runs on the board, then slipped to 39-3.
Hafeez tried to play a steadying role with his 33rd half century in ODIs but Pakistan wasn't able to build partnerships at the top of the order. The best was his 45-run stand with Shoaib Malik (27) for the fourth wicket and when he was out for 60 Pakistan was in trouble at 127-6.
Hasan Ali helped save Pakistan with his highest score in any form of cricket and his 70-run partnership with Shadab Khan for the eighth wicket revived a failing innings. Shadab went on to make 52, to match his highest score in ODIs and to drag Pakistan closer to a competitive total.
Tim Southee (2-57) and Trent Boult (1-54) both claimed early wickets to give the bowling side the upper hand. Captain Kane Williamson introduced his spinners early and left-armer Mitchell Santner and leg-spinner Todd Astle prevented Pakistan from rebuilding through the middle of the innings.
Santner took 1-34 from his 10 overs and Astle claimed the wickets of Malik and captain Sarfraz Ahmed (3) to finish with 2-50 from seven overs.
Speedster Lockie Ferguson was also a major contributor with 3-39 from 10 overs.