Cricket: Thomson steers Kiwis to victory

Click to follow
Pakistan 344 and 179

New Zealand 200 and 277-4

New Zealand win by five wickets

A MAIDEN Test century by Shane Thomson steered New Zealand to a five-wicket win over Pakistan early this morning in the third and final Test here. New Zealand started the day needing just 47 to win and completed their task within an hour. Their previous highest score to win a Test was 278 for 8, also against Pakistan, in Dunedin in 1985. Pakistan won the series 2-1.

The match was turned around by a 154-run partnership between Thomson and Bryan Young, whose maiden Test century in his fourth Test anchored the innings.

Young was finally out this morning, bowled by Wasim Akram for 120 after seven hours in which he played both Akram and Waqar Younis with assurance. He has a good solid defence, drives nicely, works the ball away diligently off his legs and is very fast between the wickets.

At 133 for 4 on the previous day, however, the match had been slipping away when Thomson arrived. He went for his strokes from the start and in so doing took some of the pressure off Young, who had become marooned in the eighties.

Thomson was most severe on the second-string bowlers, the seamer Aamir Nazir and the off-spinner Akram Raza, as he pulled, drove and cut with power and timing. He used his feet well to Raza, once coming down the pitch and driving him for a handsome straight six. By the end of the day, he was square cutting and hooking Waqar with something approaching disdain.

Soon after the start, Blair Hartland was caught at slip. Andrew Jones began his last Test innings in style, but in the first over after lunch he tried to take a single to mid-on and was thrown out by Basit Ali in a replay of his dismissal in the first innings. Ken Rutherford and Mark Greatbatch, who are badly out of form, soon perished to Wasim and Waqar.

PAKISTAN - First Innings 344 (Basit Ali 103, Saeed Anwar 69).

NEW ZEALAND - First Innings 200 (A H Jones 81; Waqar Younis 6-78).

PAKISTAN - Second Innings 179 (Basit Ali 67; D K Morrison 4-66).

NEW ZEALAND - Second Innings

B A Young b Akram 120 B R Hartland c Inzamam b Akram 10 A H Jones run out 26 *K R Rutherford lbw b Akram 13 M J Greatbatch c Inzamam b Waqar 1 S A Thomson not out 120 T E Blain not out 11 Extras (nb18, lb5) 23 Total (for 5) 324

Fall: 1-22 2-76 3-119 4-133 5-287.

Bowling: Akram 38-6-105-3; Waqar 27-6-84-1; Nazir 16-0-59-0; Raza 19-5-49-0; Sohail 2-1-5-0; Malik 4-1-13- 0; Anwar 1-0-4-0.