Key takeaways from Pakistan’s first ODI win over Kiwis

By: News Desk
Published: 10:58 PM, 9 Jan, 2023
Key takeaways from Pakistan’s first ODI win over Kiwis
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Pakistan outsmarted an in-form New Zealand side by seven wickets in the first one-day international played at Karachi’s National Stadium.

The last World Cup runners-up New Zealand have won 10 of their 16 ODIs last year prior to this match.

They have also been dominant against Pakistan, having won 12 of the last 15 ODIs between the two teams.

However, Pakistan prevailed in their latest outing in the 50-over format against Kiwis on the home trough after seeing a sluggish and disappointing home season of red ball.

Here are some key takeaways from the first ODI.

Playing at your own pace

Pakistan are currently under the microscope of so many so-called cricket pundits for the pace of their game. The debate intensified after they were bamboozled by Bazball approach of visiting England side which led to the first-ever home series whitewash of Pakistan. After flamboyant Shahid Afridi took the helm of the selection committee the talk of strike rates took the centre stage.

We saw Pakistan struggling while trying to keep up the pace in the red ball cricket to match their opponents and losing their ground. However, it seems that Babar Azam has realized the situation better when it came to white ball cricket and instead of turning to insanity Pakistan batters played at their own pace and strengths which led to an easy win.

Pakistan are never known for master blasters in any form of the game except a few including Afridi whom performances added a little to the cause of the team and usually added extra pressure on the rest of the team.

So, whether it is Twenty20, ODI, or Test, Pakistan can only prevail if they play as per their strengths instead of fantasizing or being fascinated by the power hitting alone. Only the right mix can bring out the best and achieve the goal of winning.

Naseem Shah, the beauty

Naseem Shah yet again proved his worth for years ahead for the team when he struck five times to keep a check on Kiwis. Naseem once again claimed five wickets in one day. It was the second time in his four ODIs that he has claimed the fiver-Fers.

Naseem is also the first bowler who has taken 15 wickets in the first four ODIs. However, the youngster needs to work on his economy rate to become a more lethal weapon in future in Pakistan’s arsenal. Along with Shaheen Afridi and Haris Rauf, this pace trio of Pakistan can create a huge difference for the team in future and the key is to manage them well and preserve their energy for achieving the best-desired results.

Dream debut

Usama Mir, the young legspinner had a dream debut as he took his the wicket of top-ranked Kiwi batter and their captain Kane Williamson as his debut wicket.

Legspinner Mir had been rewarded for a strong Pakistan Cup showing where he finished as the highest wicket-taker with 28 strikes at 17.96 and he did not disappoint.

On a skiddy and slow surface that was offering turn, Mir bowled a dream delivery for a leg-spinner that totally bamboozled Williamson. He landed the ball right on a length on the middle and leg, got it to spin away and beat Williamson's bat on the outside and clipped the bails.

Mir finished the match with figures of 2-42 as he also took another big wicket of Tom Latham.


Fakhar Zaman and Haris Sohail both played beautifully after making a comeback to one day side. Both were not in the ODI probables announced by former chief selector M Wasim. However, after Afridi took the responsibility, he added both to the team and both made the cut right away. Fakhar made another half century before being bowled out for 56 off 77 balls.

Sohail on the other hand played a smooth and fast knock of 32 off 23 balls hitting two sixes and as many fours. He looked comfortable and confident in the middle and seems ready to grab the second chance with both hands.

M Rizwan, who sat out from the Test matches and is under a lot of pressure from his Sarfaraz Ahmad fans and backers, proved once again that he is as Mr dependable as his captain Babar Azam is for the team when it comes to white ball cricket. He kept his cool to stabilise the innings in partnership with Babar, who also scored another brilliant half-century and then ensured to take the team home with a perfect finish.

Babar Azam also put behind all the negativity surrounding him after a media conference to show the critics what he is made of. He scored 10th fifty in his last 11th outing.

Categories : Sports