Bowling attack secures series win

The BLACKCAPS bowling attack have ripped through the Pakistan batting line up to secure a seven run win and seal the One-Day series at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi.

Daniel Vettori won the toss and elected to bat with the team being bowled out for the modest total of 211 after 46.3 overs but a spirited bowling line turned in an outstanding display to dismiss Pakistan for 204.

A last wicket partnership of 103 between Mohammad Aamer and Saeed Ajmal threatened the total batsmen but fell just short in a thrilling finish.

The pair survived a number of confident LBW and caught behind appeals but kept their cool before Ajmal was caught of the first ball of the final over.

Brendon McCullum backed up his century from two days ago with a well crafted 76 off 78 at the top of the innings.  He started conservatively before increasing the tempo and had the BLACKCAPS in the strong position of 130 for two at the half way point.

The rest of the BLACKCAPS line up couldn’t take advantage of the solid platform with spin bowler Saeed Ajmal tearing through the middle order.

The opening pair put on 72 before Aaron Redmond was caught at third man for 21.  Martin Guptill only managed eight before Ross Taylor (44) and McCullum consolidated with at 50 run partnership for the third wicket.

When McCullum fell a procession began that saw the BLACKCAPS lose their last eight wickets for 73 runs. 

Saeed Ajmal did most of the damage finishing with career best figures of four for 33 but was well supported by Mohammad Aamer (two for 41), Shahid Afridi (one for 33) and Shoaib Malik (one for 32)

Pakistan made a steady start in reply putting on 47 for the first wicket before Vettori lead a fight back, trapping Khalid Latif LBW for 19.

Salman Butt was the next to go for 25, run out by Guptill, with Taylor taking a low diving catch to get rid of Younis Khan (3) off the bowing of Shane Bond.

Then 51 for three became 74 for 4 as Kyle Mills induced a false shot from Shoaib Malik with Tim Southee edging out Umar Akmal for 12.

Dangerman Shahid Afridi didn’t fire, caught behind for five, with their other big hitter Kamran Akmal holing out for four to give Southee his second and effectively rule Pakistan out of the match at 86 for eight.

The wickets kept tumbling as Abdul Razzaq threw his wicket away with a careless run-out and next to go was Umar Gul who tamely chipped a Jacob Oram delivery to mid-wicket.

The final partnership took them close with number ten batsman Mohammad Aamer lashing a world record 73 off 81 but Jacob Oram had Saeed Aamer caught at fine leg for 33 to wrap up the innings.

All of the bowlers contributed with the ball with Oram being the pick of the attack taking three for 20 and Southee also in fine form taking two for 26.

The BLACKCAPS now play Pakistan in two match Twenty20 series starting on Thursday 12th November at 8:00pm (local time), 5:00am +1d (NZ time).

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