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New Zealand beat Pakistan by 61 runs in rain-hit first ODI

WELLINGTON: New Zealand won the first ODI against Pakistan by 61 runs via the DLS method as the match called off after continuing rainfall at Reserve Basin in Wellington on Saturday.

Batting first against visitors, the home side scored 315 runs against loss of seven wickets in the first one-day international (first ODI) here. Pakistan had to pay dearly as rival captain Kane Williamson was dropped who scored a brilliant century.

Pakistan’s batting stuttered losing six wickets for 166 in 30 overs except for opener Fakhar Zaman who remained not out on 86 with Faheem Ashraf in company. Other top order batsmen of Pakistan failed to perform against New Zealand’s quality bowling attack.

Green Shirts lost early wickets while chasing a daunting target of 316 runs before the rain interrupted the match.

Pakistan was at 166 with loss of six wickets after 30.1 overs when the play was suspended and the match later called off due to incessant rainfall.

Earlier, Pakistan won the toss and asked the hosts to bat first. In allotted 50 overs, New Zealand post a challenging total.

Skipper Kane Williamson hammered 115 runs to guide the team to 315 for seven after being dropped in 30s by rival captain Sarfraz Ahmed.

Hassan Ali was pick of Pakistani bowlers with three wickets, while Mohammad Amir, Rumman Raees, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman took one each.

Chasing the target, Green Shirts lost their opening batsman Azhar Ali at just six runs, followed by wicket of Babar Azam on first ball duck. Both batsmen were dismissed by Tim Southee.

Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed earlier said that his team will continue its winning streak in the five-match ODI series against New Zealand.

“We have won nine matches in a row because we are playing as a unit, not individuals,” he mentioned after the toss.

Opening batsman Azhar Ali has returned to the side in place of Imam ul Haq, while fast bowling duo Rumman Raees and Mohammad Aamir are back in place of injured Imad Wasim and Usman Khan Shinwari.

Squads:

Pakistan

Sarfraz Ahmed (Capt), Azhar Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Hafeez, Faheem Ashraf, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, and Rumman Raees

New Zealand

Kane Williamson (Capt), Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, Ross Taylor, Tom Latham, Henry Nicholls, Todd Astle, Mitchell Santner, Tim Southee, Lockie Ferguson, and Trent Boult

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