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Round-up: New Zealand win series, Hafeez, Gambhir call time
Cricket In Past Week

Round-up: New Zealand win series, Hafeez, Gambhir call time

New Zealand's 49-year wait ends

New Zealand beat Pakistan by 123 runs on the fifth day of the third and final Test on Friday to win the three-match series 2-1. This was New Zealand’s first away series win over Pakistan in 49 years.

Pakistan were set 280 runs to win, but were dismissed for 156 in 56.1 overs with spinners Ajaz Patel taking 3-42 and Will Somerville collecting 3-52 in Abu Dhabi.

Read: ‘Series win against Pakistan in these conditions quite special’ – Williamson

Read: Arthur wants his players to ‘toughen up’ and 'seize key moments' in Tests

The mind games

Australia coach Justin Langer rebuffed criticism from India great Sachin Tendulkar that Australia's batting was too defensive, and complained that if his team celebrated like Virat Kohli they would be seen as "the worst blokes in the world".

India built a 166-run lead over Australia on the third day of an absorbing opening Test in Adelaide with dangerman Cheteshwar Pujara unbeaten on 40, although the late wicket of star batsman Virat Kohli gave the home team a slight ray of hope.

Read: Langer defends defensive approach after Tendulkar's criticism

Read: 'Adelaide ton one of my most memorable' - Pujara

Taibu returns to professional cricket

Former Zimbabwe captain Tatenda Taibu announced a surprise return to professional cricket at the age of 35.

The wicket-keeper batsman said that the motivation behind his return was a conversation he had with his son.

“My son Tatenda junior often asks how I used to play, now that he has taken a liking to the sport. I have stayed extremely fit and healthy and feel I’m still one of the fittest cricketers around, so I thought maybe I can let him see for himself how I can perform,” he was quoted as saying by a news website.

Gayle exonerated

West Indies opener Chris Gayle Monday won a US$221,000 payout from the Australian Fairfax Media group, which alleged he exposed his genitals to a massage therapist.

He won his defamation case in October last year, with jurors finding Fairfax was motivated by malice and had failed to establish a defense of truth.

More here: Chris Gayle awarded US$221,000 in damages in defamation case

Powell steps in for Holder

In the absence of injured Jason Holder, Rovman Powell was named interim captain as the visitors seek to make amends for their 2-1 home series defeat to Bangladesh in July.

Also read: Darren Bravo returns for Bangladesh ODIs after two years

Gambhir calls it a day

Indian opener Gautam Gambhir on Tuesday announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.

Gambhir, who played a key role in two of India's World Cup triumphs – the 2007 World T20 and 2011 World Cup, accumulated 4154 runs in 58 Tests. He also represented India in 147 ODIs and 37 T20Is.

Watch: Gautam Gambhir announces retirement

South Africa announce squad for Pakistan Tests

South Africa on Thursday picked uncapped batsman Zubayr Hamza for the upcoming Test series against Pakistan starting December 26.

In case Hamza makes his debut in any of the three Tests, he will become the 100th player to represent South Africa in Test cricket.

Details: South Africa pick Zubayr Hamza, Duanne Olivier for Pakistan Tests

Professor calls time on Test career

Former Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez announced his retirement from Test cricket post the match against New Zealand in Abu Dhabi.

The 38-year-old all-rounder made a comeback to the Test side against Australia in October after a hiatus of two years and since his hundred on return, he has accumulated just 66 runs in seven innings.

Many far-famed people from the cricket fraternity praised and bade him farewell. Some did it on social media and some on broadcast media.