Pakistan continue their dominance
It may have come as a surprise to many that Pakistan did not try to chase down New Zealand's target of 274, but considering that they last won a series in 2006-07, their safe strategy was probably understandable. Pakistan, though, continued to maintain their excellent stats in New Zealand. Their record of eight wins in 15 matches in New Zealand since 1990 is level with Australia's. Also, Pakistan continued their excellent run in Wellington, where they have not lost a single match since 1990.
For New Zealand, however, this turned out to be yet another opportunity lost to register an elusive series win. They last won a Test series in 2005-06 (matches excluding Bangladesh and Zimbabwe) against West Indies at home. Since then, their only series wins have come against Bangladesh and they have lost three of their last five home series.
The defeat in the first Test was Vettori's 16th as captain. Among the four New Zealand captains who have led the team in at least 20 Tests, his win-loss ratio of 0.37 is better only than John Reid's 0.16.
Pakistan were the more consistent side in both departments. Their bowling was much more lethal as they dismissed New Zealand for 110 in Hamilton and succeeded in bowling out the home team in all four innings. New Zealand, despite performing much better in Wellington, lacked the bowling firepower to bowl out Pakistan twice.
|Team||Runs scored||Batting average||100||50||Wickets taken||Bowling average||5WI||10WM|
Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan scored crucial half-centuries to help Pakistan salvage a draw in the second Test. Misbah has revelled in his captaincy role: he has scored six fifties in seven innings since taking over as captain and is just one fifty away from equalling the record of seven consecutive half-centuries.
Younis, on the other hand, improved on his already outstanding fourth-innings record. Among batsmen with over 700 runs in the fourth innings, his average of 59.13 is second only to Don Bradman's 73.40. Only two of his eight fifty-plus scores have come in victories, though.
Jesse Ryder had a career average of over 50 coming into this series against Pakistan. But his performance in this series was very poor, as he aggregated just 39 runs in four innings including two first-ball ducks, which resulted in his career average dropping to less than 45.
Despite his troubles with captaincy, Vettori's superb batting form continued. He scored his sixth Test century overall and his fourth as captain. Among New Zealand batsmen who have scored at least 1000 runs as captain, Vettori's average of 39.12 is the fifth highest. His four-wicket haul in the first innings made him only the sixth player to score a century and pick up four wickets in an innings in the same match as captain.