Pakistan tighten their grip on resilient New Zealand — Twitter Reactions

Pakistan recovered after a shaky start in today's first session on day four in Abu Dhabi.

Chasing a 176-run target, Pakistan looked to be on track for a victory at Lunch, but yet another unexpected batting collapse ensured they were all out for 171 as New Zealand's Ajaz Patel bowled exceedingly well to take a five-wicket haul. But they managed to put only 153 in their first innings.

Patel was born in Mumbai and shifted to New Zealand as a child, resulting in his ability to interact in Hindi. However, in the unlikeliest and unfortunate turn of events, the hosts lost seven wickets scoring only 41 runs in the next 21.1 overs as New Zealand scripted their narrowest Test win in history.

Before his dismissal, Shafiq passed a personal milestone of 4,000 Test runs, becoming the 11th Pakistani batsman to do so.

Colin de Grandhomme got rid off Imam-ul-Haq early in the innings, and Trent Boult followed soon by picking up the wicket of Mohammad Hafeez. Pakistan, were 130/4 at the break with Azhar Ali unbeaten on 40 after an innings-reviving stand of 82 with Asad Shafiq before the lunch.

"Some of the characteristics we hold very dear is our attitude whenever we had to get back into the game, be it with the bat, ball or in the field throughout these four days", he said. Mohammad Abbas though picked up 2 wickets in the first innings but he remained wicketless in the second innings which occurred for the first time since he made his Test debut against West Indies in April 2017.

The wicket was challenging and both teams had to fight hard, and certainly Pakistan had the upper hand after day one.

Pakistan have enjoyed some good form in this format of the game in 2018 as they come off successful series against England as they split a two-match series and then they beat Australia in UAE last month 1-0 in another two-match series. In these conditions Pakistan are a very strong side.

"We knew the surface wasn't an easy one".

The second Test begins in Dubai on Saturday.


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