Pakistan prove to strong for Kiwis
Shahid Afridi won his second game in a row as captain of Pakistan's Twenty20 team as the Twenty20 World Cup champs beat New Zealand by 49 runs at the Dubai Sports City Cricket Stadium.
After losing their best of three one day series 2-1 earlier this week Afridi wanted Pakistan to rebound straight away in the shortest format of the game. The 49 run victory saw Pakistan claim their 20th Twenty20 international victory in 26 games.
The injury hit Kiwis were unable to unable to chase down the required total and slumped to their third straight Twenty20 defeat against Pakistan.
Stand in skipper Brendon McCullum started the Kiwis run chase in spectacular fashion smashing 17 runs off the first over which was bowled by Mohammad Aamir.
The Kiwis hopes of a surprise victory were short lived though as Aamir struck in his next over to remove Brendon McCullum (19) before taking the prize wicket of Ross Taylor who could only score 5 runs.
The dismissal of Taylor left the Kiwis in trouble with just 34 runs on the board with only seven wickets remaining. In such a precarious position the Kiwis needed their middle order to deliver but Scot Styris (4) and Neil Broom (14) were soon back in the changing rooms and Pakistan could sense another victory.
Abdul Razzaq claimed the wickets of Styris and Broom before spinners Shahid Afridi (2-21) and off-spinner Saeed Ajmal (2-18) wrapped up the New Zealand's innings.
Earlier, after being put into bat by McCullum Pakistan got off to a perfect start as opener Imran Nazir who had been recalled to the side hit a quick fire 58 from just 38 balls.
Partnered by Afridi (24) Nazir hit five boundaries and four huge sixes in his innings before being dismissed by Shane Bond. The wicket of Nazir seemed to regenerate New Zealand as they claimed the last 6 wickets for just 69 runs.
Despite the collapse by Pakistan the damaged had already been down and New Zealand were left to think about what could have been if they had be able to pick from a fully fit squad.
They went into the game missing injured captain Daniel Vettori, all rounder Jacob Oram and pacemen Kyle Mills and James Franklin.