New Zealand captain Kane Williamson praised the resilience of the Pakistan cricket team while batting on the final day of the Test match in Mount Maunganui. The visitors came within a whisker of saving the Test match as they only had to negotiate 27 more deliveries to earn a draw. However, the Kiwis delivered a decisive blow in the last session by picking up six wickets post-tea and won the match by 101 runs.
Speaking after the game, Williamson said both teams gave everything and praised his bowlers for their perseverance.
"It was a brilliant game. Both teams put their best foot forward, and Pakistan were incredibly resilient in that second innings, but the boys kept coming. A huge effort by the bowlers to get us across the line.We were trying our best, but there are a number of quality players in that Pakistan side, and you expect partnerships to build, especially when the ball got soft" said Williamson.
"We were just trying to stay in the game even when there was nothing happening because in cricket you might get a run out [Rizwan in first innings] which was perhaps significant in terms of the match and number of other moments that can happen," added Williamson.
The Pakistan cricket team had a target of 373 runs to chase in the final innings. It was down and out at one point as the score was 75-4. But an incredible 165-run partnership between Fawad Alam and Mohammad Rizwan brought the team back into the game, and even a victory looked possible at one point.
Their partnership was broken by Kyle Jamieson when the Pakistan cricket team was still 131 runs away, and 25 overs remained in the day.
Pakistan cricket team's position in World Test Championship
The Pakistan cricket team is in the 5th spot on the ICC World Test Championship Points Table as it has won only one Test series in the World Test Championship cycle. The team is already out of contention to qualify for the finals.
Meanwhile, New Zealand moved closer to the second spot with this win, but they are still behind Australia and India in the World Test Championship table.
The Pakistan cricket team will now look to level the two-match Test series against New Zealand at Christchurch, starting from January 3, 2021.Published 30 Dec 2020, 16:02 IST