New Zealand has been one of the toughest visiting team countries to win lately, but a weakened Pakistani team that has eluded regular captain and punch talisman Babar Azam has the first test started positive by winning the litter. Replacement captain Mohammad Rizwan has brought New Zealand to a place with a healthy grass cover on Mount Maunganui.
There have been two changes for New Zealand from the team that recently beat West Indies in Wellington’s second Test. Their captain Kane Williamson, who missed that test on paternity leave, returned in place of Will Young while Mitchell Santner came back to give New Zealand a spin option in place of all-rounder Daryl Mitchell.
Pakistan’s XI went as expected, with spinner Yasir Shah joining four sailors – Mohammad Abbas, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Naseem Shah and the all-rounder Faheem Ashraf – in a five-man attack.
Ross Taylor, meanwhile, was 438. Times named in a New Zealand XI in international cricket, making him his best-staffed player ahead of Daniel Vettori.
Pakistan: 1 Shan Masood, 2 Abid Ali, 3 Azhar Ali, 4 Fawad Alam, 5 Haris Sohail, 6 Mohammad Rizwan (Capt and week), 7 Faheem Ashraf, 8 Yasir Shah, 9 Mohammad Abbas, 10 Shaheen Shah Afridi 11 Naseem Shah.
New Zealand: 1 Tom Latham, 2 Tom Blundell, 3 Kane Williamson (Capt), 4 Ross Taylor, 5 Henry Nicholls, 6 BJ Watling (week), 7 Mitchell Santner, 8 Kyle Jamieson, 9 Tim Southee, 10 Neil Wagner , 11 Trent Boult.
Pakistani national cricket team, New Zealand national cricket team, test cricket
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