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Azhar, Haris frustrate disciplined New Zealand on day one of Dubai Test
New Zealand tour of UAE

Azhar, Haris frustrate disciplined New Zealand on day one of Dubai Test

Ball-by-ball clips & scorecard: Pakistan vs New Zealand, 2nd Test, Dubai

Middle order batsmen Azhar Ali and Haris Sohail hit gritty half-centuries but Pakistan were restricted by some tight New Zealand bowling and a lifeless pitch to 207-4 on the opening day of the second Test in Dubai.

Azhar and Sohail added 126 for the third wicket until a careless run out saw the end of Azhar for 81. Sohail was not out on 81 at the end of day’s play.

Keen to get on to the offensive early, Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed decided to bat first but it was the Black Caps who had the better of the morning with Colin de Grandhomme ridding of both openers for nine each.

Hafeez was caught at slip by Tom Latham in the eighth over and before the Kiwis’ limited-overs gloveman accounted for Imam-ul-Haq in de Grandhomme’s next over.

Hafeez has managed just 66 runs in six innings since scoring a comeback hundred against Australia at the same venue last month.

Pakistan fears of a collapse suffered in Abu Dhabi were allayed as Azhar and Sohail dug in.

Azhar, who made a valiant 65 in that unsuccessful 176-run chase in the first Test, was shaky at the start as he edged the second ball he faced off de Grandhomme through the slips.

Medium-pacer De Grandhomme was the pick of the Kiwi bowlers with 2-32 from his 19 overs.

Azhar went on to hit seven boundaries and a six in his 187-ball stay at the crease before an awful mix-up deprived him of a 14th hundred.

Patel, who took seven wickets in his debut Test in Abu Dhabi, then had Asad Shafiq caught off a miscued drive to backward point.

Sohail was joined by Babar Azam who was 14 not out at the close by which stage they had added 33 for the fifth wicket.

Both teams fielded unchanged lineups.