Test Match


Eight days after their consolation win over Australia, Pakistan won again in New Zealand. As at Sydney, their heroes were Mushtaq Ahmed, who took ten wickets in a Test for the first time, and Ijaz Ahmed, with his second hundred in successive games.

The tourists had thrown away a strong position on the first day, when Aamir Sohail and Ramiz Raja shared an opening stand of 135, only for all ten wickets to crash for 73. Cairns started the slide with three for three in 21 balls. Sohail fell for 88 from 94 balls when he lost his balance and dislodged the bails; some thought Cairns was unlucky not to have had him hit wicket earlier, on 29. In New Zealand's reply, debutant Craig Spearman made a promising 40, hitting five hours and a six off Mushtaq before he was deceived by a top-spinner. The home side closed on 98 for three, but lost only Fleming next morning. Ramiz Raja missed a sitter at mid-on when Cairns was 30; Pakistan suffered for it when Cairns made 76, adding 102 with Twose. But once Wasim Akram had separated them, there was little resistance. The last six wickets fall for 65 and Wasim picked up five for 14 in ten overs.

New Zealand had a useful lead of 78, but this time the Pakistani batsmen applied themselves. By the second-day close, they were 60 runs in credit with only one wicket down, though Ramiz had temporarily retired after a blow to the wrist. They batted throughout the third day, extending their lead to 291. Ijaz and Inzamam-ul-Haq had taken their second-wicket stand to 140 before Inzamam was caught at slip; Ijaz escaped on 81, when Parore dropped him off Morrison's bowling, but after lunch surged from 89 to his fourth Test hundred with three fours. In all, he hit 13 fours and two sixes and batted for almost five hours. He was supported by Salim Malik and then Ramiz, who returned to make another half-century, Pakistan were finally out for 434 an hour into the fourth morning, after Waqar Younis and Mushtaq had put on a brisk 41 for the ninth wicket.

Chasing an unlikely 357, Spearman and Young gave New Zealand another respectable start, with 50, but once Mushtaq broke through they collapsed to 75 for five. When the captain, Germon, was run out at 101 for six, it looked as if the match might be over in four days. Twose rallied the lower order and reached his second fifty of the game, but Pakistan needed little more than an hour to complete victory on the final morning. Mushtaq took seven for 56, his best Test figures, which gave him a total of 28 in his last three Tests; Waqar Younis claimed his 200th Test wicket in his 38th match by bowling Nash. Last man Morrison postponed creating a new landmark when he scored a single before falling to Mushtaq; in the first innings, he had equalled the Test record of 23 ducks by India's Bhagwat Chandrasekhar.

Man of the Match: Mushtaq Ahmed.

Close of play: First day, New Zealand 98-3 (S. P. Fleming 16*, R. G. Twose 11*); Second day, Pakistan 138-1 (Ijaz Ahmed 54*, Inzamam-ul-Haq 52*); Third day, Pakistan 369-7 (Wasim Akram 11, Mushtaq Ahmed 1); Fourth day, New Zealand 158-7 (R. G. Twose 44*, G. R. Larsen 8*).

© John Wisden & Co