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Mohammad Abbas rues spilled chances as New Zealand surge ahead
Pakistan News

Mohammad Abbas rues spilled chances as New Zealand surge ahead

Mohammad Abbas has described the ordeal of witnessing drops from fellow fielders as "frustrating" as New Zealand gained a dominant position in the ongoing second Test in Christchurch.

After maintaining tight lines during the first half of the day, Pakistan bowlers had to suffer the consequences of botched chances behind the stumps and a wicket off a no-ball.

Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls extended the hosts' advantage in an unbroken 215-run stand for the fourth wicket, prospering with a mix of good fortune and batting excellence.

"Obviously, it was a tough day for us. As a bowling unit, if the fielders drop catches, it is very costly in Test cricket," Pakistan paceman Abbas told reporters after the end of the day's play.

"Dropping catches or getting a wicket off a no-ball is frustrating. Both are very good players, especially Williamson is a world-class player – he doesn't give you a lot of chances and it is very difficult to get his wicket."

Williamson was rendered lucky on 82 when the ball bisected the narrow gap between Shan Masood and Haris Sohail in the slip cordon at a catchable height. He was assisted by another slip-up after reaching his 24th Test ton and finished the day not out on 112.

Nicholls, meanwhile, was dismissed by Shaheen Afridi on three but the left-arm speedster had over-stepped. Towards the end of the day, Pakistan were deprived of the chance to get Nicholls' wicket when a regulation catch was shelled by captain Mohammad Rizwan.

Shedding light on Pakistan's lacklustre show with the ball post-tea, Abbas claimed the pitch had eased up for the batsmen giving them enough time to find gaps and apply pressure on the fielding side.

"The pitch has also changed quite a bit since the batsmen now have a lot of time to play length deliveries."

"I delivered 20 overs today and gave away 40-something runs and this is what years of domestic cricket and Test experience teaches you," he added while assessing his personal performance. "Test cricket is primarily a test of your abilities and patience so if you can't pick up wickets, you focus on not conceding many runs and I have applied this plan here as well."

Abbas also reserved praise for Williamson's special knock, admiring the New Zealand skipper's remarkable poise and unwavering temperament.

"We had some plans against him but he is a capable player and took time to settle in. When he spent time at the wicket, it got easier for him to score runs."