New Zealand defeated Pakistan in the 2nd ODI at Karachi by 79 runs to level the 3-match ODI series. The Kiwis are currently the ranked 1 side in ODIs and this win will give them a lot of confidence as they start preparing for the upcoming ICC Men’s 50-over World Cup in India. Devon Conway’s brilliant century, Kane Williamson’s gritty half-century and an equal contribution from the bowlers ensured the Kiwis stay alive in the series.
Kane Williamson won the toss on, what looked like a belter, and decided to bat first. At first, it seemed a bit confusing given the fact they batted first in the 1st ODI and Pakistan had no issues chasing down the target they were set. However, it turned out to be a masterpiece as Williamson read the conditions perfectly. He replaced Henry Shipley with Ish Sodhi in the playing XI and at the end, every piece fell into shape perfectly to complete a series-leveling win.
Batting first, New Zealand put up a formidable 261 on a turning track with contributions from Conway, Williamson and a late-order blitz from Santner. The rest of the Kiwi batter failed to cross double-digits. Mohammad Nawaz was the star of the Pakistani bowling line-up snaring up 4 wickets for just 38 runs from his 10 overs. Naseem Shah, the man of the match from the 1st ODI, ended up with 3 wickets.
Chasing 262, Pakistan needed a firing start at the top with the new ball. It wasn’t the case as Fakhar was dismissed cheaply by Tim Southee. Imam-ul-Haq followed his opening partner shortly. Babar and Rizwan tried to revive the chase with a 55-run stand but everything went downhill for the home team after the dismissal of Rizwan. Babar fought a lone battle of 79 from 114 balls and was the 9th wicket to fall. Sodhi and Southee picked up 2 wickets each. Phillips, Bracewell, Santner and Ferguson picked up one wicket each while the rest went to run-outs. Devon Conway was adjudged the player of the match for his magnificent 100.
The final match of the ODI series will be played at the same venue on January 13.