Zaman keeps Pakistan alive in T20I series

Opener’s 50 off 28 helps Men in Green register 48-run win over New Zealand

Fakhar Zaman’s special innings helped Pakistan beat New Zealand by 48 runs in the second T20I against New Zealand in Auckland on Thursday.The win, which was visitors’ first of the tour, also broke 13-game winning streak of the Black Caps overs the Green Shirts in all formats.

The day started with visitor’s captain Sarfraz Ahmed winning the toss and opting to bat first on a beautiful batting track. His decision paid dividend as Zaman, along with his new partner Ahmad Shahzad, put a 94-run opening partnership to put Pakistan on top. Shahzad (44 off 34) departed on the final delivery of the 10th over, and Zaman soon followed him.

However, Sarfraz along with young Babar Azam made sure that there was no collapse this time around as the duo added 91 runs for the third wicket, eventually helped the visitors to post mammoth 201 for the loss of four wickets in their allotted 20 overs. Zaman scored 50 off 28 with the help five fours and three sixes, whereas Babar also scored 50 not out off 29 balls with the help of five fours and one six.

For New Zealand, all-rounder Ben Wheeler was the pick of the bowlers as he claimed three wickets.Chasing 202 was never going to be easy, even for an in-form New Zealand batting lineup, who kept loosing wickets at regular interval and were eventually bowled out for 153 in the 19th over. Top scorer for the home side was all-rounder Mitchell Santner, who scored 37 off 28 with the help of four fours.

For Pakistan, all-rounder Faheem Ashraf was the pick of the bowlers, as he claimed three wickets and gave away 22 runs in 3.3 overs. For his outstanding batting performance, Zaman was named player of the match.

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