19 Jan 2011

Early wickets in Wellington

12:26 pm on 19 January 2011

The New Zealand cricketers have started well in their bid to bowl Pakistan out and win the second and final Test in Wellington, with their seam bowlers taking three early wickets.

Opening batsman Taufeeq Umar fell lbw to Tim Southee in the second over, then first drop Azar Ali went lbw for 10 to Chris Martin before the other opener Mohammad Hafeez was caught by Ross Taylor off Martin for 32.

So after just an hour and a half's play Pakistan are 55 for three needing 219 runs to win.

Both sides started the last day with a chance at winning at the Basin Reserve.

Pakistan can clean-sweep the two-Test series if they reach the target of 274 runs set by the Black Caps, but with the tourists' win in the opener in Hamilton, they may be more than happy to play for the draw.

The home side were bowled out for 293 in their second innings on day four after New Zealand had looked on track to score an even bigger total with Brendon McCullum and top scorer Martin Guptill firing at the top of the order, but a late collapse left Pakistan in with a chance of chasing down the Black Caps score.

Umar Gul ripped through the Black Caps lower order with New Zealand losing four wickets for just seven runs at the end of the late session, and the Black Caps opener McCullum says the test is now perfectly poised.

Opener McCullum knows the formula and says he's excited but they must bowl Pakistan out, and they'll be desperate.

Day five gets underway at 11 o'clock with Pakistan chasing exactly the same record fourth innings score of 274 for the Basin Reserve set by their predecessors back in 2003, which was due to the great Inzamam-ul-Haq and Mohammad Yousuf.

And the batsman and former captain Yousuf has been left out by the Pakistan selectors from their 15-man squad for the World Cup.

All the players set to contest the one-day series here have been included - New Zealand's final ODI squad's announced today.