The Pakistan team is on a roll with back to back wins against the White Ferns. It was the second match of the white ball series between the two teams. The visitors claimed another victory over host New Zealand by 10 runs at the University Oval, Otago on Tuesday (December 5).
Pakistan and New Zealand are going head-to-head for three T20Is and three ODIs in this series. Two T20Is have concluded with Pakistan emerging victorious in both. Previous predictions suggest that the chaser's side is at an advantage while playing at the Oval. New Zealand skipper, Sophie Devine, won the toss once again. And this time they chose to ball first. Pakistan overturned the predictions with their commendable performance in both the innings.
It was a special day for New Zealand star performer Suzie Bates. She is the third woman cricketer to have played 300 internationals. Hence, her alma mater, the University of Otago, renamed the University Oval to Suzie Bates Oval for the 2nd T20I.
Pakistan openers Muneeba Ali and Shawaal Zulfiqar made their mark this time. Unlike the last match, the openers hit it off from the very beginning. By the end of the first three overs, they had put up a decent score of 15 runs, with both the openers smashing some great boundaries.
Then the New Zealand skipper took the ball. Unfortunately, she delivered three consecutive wide balls. But, the very next ball she got the first wicket and Zulfiqar had to retire back to the dugout.
Muneeba’s 35 off 28 balls gave a great jolt at the very beginning of Pakistan’s scoreboard. But, they faced a setback when skipper Nida Dar and Bismah Maroof were dismissed back to back in a gap of three deliveries. By then, Pakistan were at 86 for 4.
After these dismissals, Aliya Riaz stepped in at number five. Riaz swung her bat and made sure her team could put up a score of 137 for 6. For the second time in a row she remained undefeated and hit three fours and a six.
The second innings was more of a Fatima show than New Zealand’s performance. Fatima Sana maintained her record in the second match as well. She took three crucial wickets that redefined the game. Her 3 for 18 in the last match was followed by 3 for 22 in this match.
New Zealand’s Hannah Rowe made the big hits at the right time, bringing the required runs down to 18 runs in the last over. Fatima was back to end the match with her star bowling performance and she did it again. She took her third wicket of the match, Rowe.
With Rowe’s dismissal, New Zealand required 12 off 3 balls. Molly Penfold came in next, but unfortunately there were no miracles. She ended her innings with a single to her name, resulting in New Zealand ending their innings with ten runs short of their target (127 for 7).
This win marked the second victory of Pakistan over New Zealand ever. Aliya Riaz’s last minute bat swings gave her the Player of the Match title. The T20Is got away from the White Ferns, with only one more to go. They will have to gear up for the ODIs now.
Brief Scores: Pakistan 137/6 in 20 overs (Muneeba Ali 35; Aliya Riaz 32; Molly Penfold 2/17) beat New Zealand 127/7 in 20 overs (Hannah Rowe 33; Georgia Plimmer 28; Fatima Sana 3/22) by 10 runs. POTM: Aliya Riaz