3 Jan 2023

Black Caps let good start slip in second test

8:54 am on 3 January 2023
Devon Conway batting first Test Lord's 2021.


The Black Caps have started strongly but finished poorly on day one of the second cricket test against Pakistan.

Opener Devon Conway led New Zealand's early domination with a knock of 122, before the hosts struck back in the final session to limit their opponents to 309-6 at stumps.

Electing to bat first, the visitors started strongly as Conway stitched together partnerships of 134 and 100 with Tom Latham and Kane Williamson respectively in front of a modest crowd at the National Stadium.

Latham made 71, while Williamson hit 36.

Conway, who scored a total of 110 runs in the first test, hit 16 boundaries and one six in his 191-ball knock to notch his fourth century in test cricket.

"It's been a good ride so far, I've only played a handful of test games so it's nice to get the opportunity to play and contribute for the team," Conway, whose century took him past 1,000 test runs, told reporters.

"It was nice batting out there with Tommy Latham and Kane, we managed to form some good partnerships."

Pakistan were finally able to stem New Zealand's flow in the evening as they took five wickets in the final session, with Agha Salman claiming the scalps of Conway, Henry Nicholls and Daryl Mitchell.

"I try to contribute as much as possible when I get the chance to bowl," Salman told reporters.

"I think as the test progresses, the wicket will begin to turn, because I feel it has more bite than it did in the first test."

Tom Blundell was on 30 unbeaten with Ish Sodhi at the close.

The two-match series is tied at 0-0 after the opening game, which was also played in Karachi, ended in a draw.

Following the second test, the two sides will meet in a three-match one-day international series in Karachi.

Off the pitch, Pakistan were given a boost as Shaheen Afridi, who has been out of action since suffering a knee injury during the Twenty20 World Cup final in Melbourne on November 13, resumed his rehabilitation with the medical staff on Monday.

"While providing Shaheen top-notch care, this move will allow the medical staff to track his progression and pave way for his smooth return to action," the Pakistan Cricket Board said in a statement.

The statement added that fast bowler Haris Rauf's availability for the ODI series will be assessed by the medical staff in the coming week.

- Reuters, RNZ

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