Pak vs NZ: Pakistan win final T20I against New Zealand to escape whitewash

Pak vs NZ: Pakistan win final T20I against New Zealand to escape whitewash

CHRISTCHURCH: Pakistan on Sunday won the final T20I match of a five-match series against New Zealand in Christchurch escaping whitewash by 4-1.

In the first four games, the Black Caps thrashed the Green Shirts.

Part-time offspinner Iftikhar Ahmed produced career-best figures of 3-24 as a weakened New Zealand batting lineup struggled against the turning ball and were skittled for their eighth-lowest T20 total.

Only opener Finn Allen (22) and Glenn Phillips (26) passed 20 as Pakistan claimed the last eight wickets for 39 runs in comfortably their best bowling display of the series.

Left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz (2-18) was effective with the new ball, removing Rachin Ravindra and Will Young cheaply, while Shaheen Shah Afridi had something to cheer at the end of his maiden series as captain, taking 2-20.

New Zealand were missing three of their first-choice batters: Kane Williamson (knee injury), Devon Conway (Covid-19) and Daryl Mitchell (rested).

Earlier, it appeared the home side had done enough to push for a clean sweep when they restricted Pakistan´s batters with another disciplined bowling display.

Seamers Tim Southee, Matt Henry and Lockie Ferguson all claimed two scalps, along with spinner Ish Sodhi.

Southee (2-19), the highest wicket-taker in T20 cricket, dismissed debutant Haseebullah Khan in the opening over and returned in the 13th over to remove the dangerous Fakhar Zaman, who had raced to 33 off 16 balls.

Top-scorer Mohammad Rizwan departed soon afterwards for 38 off 38, ultimately consigning Pakistan to the lowest first-innings score by either team in the series.