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Pakistan on top in Twenty20 semi

A middle-order collapse saw New Zealand slump to 143-8 in their ICC World Twenty20 semi-final against Pakistan.

Lou Vincent (28) and Brendan McCullum (26) got the Black Caps off to a solid start but McCullum's dismissal saw the next five wickets fall for 33 runs.

Late hits from Ross Taylor (37), involved in two horrendous run-outs, helped the Kiwis to a defendable total.

Umar Gul (3-15) was the pick of the bowlers, with good support from Fawad Alam (2-24) and Shahid Afridi (1-24).

New Zealand captain Daniel Vettori won the toss and decided to bat first on a pitch which looked to favour the slower bowlers.

After a slow start the openers cut loose, McCullum smashing two consecutive boundaries off Mohammad Asif in the fourth over before Lou Vincent launched Sohail Tanvir for a huge six into the brewery, following that hit with a one-bounce four a ball later.

A rain break interrupted play in the seventh over for 15 minutes, but it was Alam, in the side for Salman Butt, who made the vital breakthrough.

The left-arm spinner took a fine one-handed return catch to send Vincent back to the bus shelter.

And New Zealand's hopes of a counter-attack in the final 10 overs were thwarted by a thanks to excellent bowling from Afridi and Gul.

Afridi hads McCullum trapped in front with a ball that kept low, while Gul removed Scott Styris and Peter Fulton to leave the Black Caps reeling at 87-4.

New Zealand then lost the crucial wicket of Craig MacMillan, caught at deep long-off, handing Alam his second wicket of the day.

Gul then had Jacob Oram caught behind for one and things went from bad to worse for New Zealand when a mix-up between Taylor and Vettori saw the captain sacrifice his wicket in the 17th over.

Taylor hit 17 from Asif's final over to give New Zealand some form of total to defend.

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