In the latest match of the T20I series between Pakistan and New Zealand, Pakistan’s captain Shaheen Shah Afridi provided insights after his team suffered their fourth consecutive defeat in Christchurch.
Despite a valiant effort from wicketkeeper-batter Mohammad Rizwan, whose unbeaten 90 went in vain, New Zealand secured a seven-wicket victory, marking their fourth win in the five-match series and leading 4-0.
Reflecting on the match, Shaheen shared his perspective on the target set by Pakistan. “I think the way Rizwan gave us the start, was very good. Unfortunately, we couldn’t grab the opportunity in the middle overs,” he remarked during the post-match presentation. Shaheen, who led from the front with three crucial wickets, expressed his belief that a total of 170 could have been a competitive score, especially if they had seized opportunities throughout the game.
New Zealand faced an early challenge in their run-chase, slipping to 20-3 in the third over. However, Daryl Mitchell and Glenn Phillips turned the tide with a remarkable unbroken partnership of 139 runs in 93 balls. Mitchell’s unbeaten 72 off 44 balls and Phillips’ 70 off 52 secured the victory with 11 balls to spare.
Shaheen Shah Afridi, who claimed all three wickets to fall in New Zealand’s innings, acknowledged, “I try to take wickets in the first over. I feel 170 was a good total on this pitch, and if we had grabbed our chances, we could have won this game.”
As the series concludes with the final match scheduled in Christchurch, Pakistan aims to salvage a win, while New Zealand seeks to maintain its dominance under the leadership of stand-in captain Mitch Santner.