A strong finish by Pakistan has seen them finish with a total they would be extremely confident of defending. After electing to bat, they did not have a Powerplay to remember as they were 31 for the loss of 2 wickets.
Asif Ali and Hafeez then joined forces and added 67 runs. However, just as the two decided to step on the gas, the latter perished 5 short of a half ton. Ali soon followed him and then the runs dried up.
The New Zealand bowlers were exceptionally for most parts of the innings. Adam Milne was the pick as he finished with a two-fer. Sodhi was economical and the rest also did well. Their fielding was even better. A special mention to Glenn Phillips who was a live wire out there.
Pakistan at one staged looked like they would struggle to cross the 140-run mark. Especially when Ahmed and Malik both fell in one over. But 25 runs from the last two overs courtesy, Imad Wasim and Faheem Ashraf has seen them finish two runs short of 150.
Now, the target is a tricky one and it won't be easy for New Zealand to chase this down. Also, Pakistan have never lost a game in Abu Dhabi when they have scored above 130. So history is favoring them at the moment. But the visitors do have a batting line-up capable of overhauling the target.
New Zealand (Playing XI): Glenn Phillips, Colin Munro, Kane Williamson(c), Colin de Grandhomme, Ross Taylor, Corey Anderson, Tim Seifert(w), Adam Milne, Tim Southee, Ish Sodhi, Ajaz Patel
Pakistan (Playing XI): Babar Azam, Sahibzada Farhan, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Sarfraz Ahmed(w/c), Faheem Ashraf, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi