After winning the toss, things went New Zealand’s way as they decided to bat first in the 2nd Test at Dubai against Pakistan. New Zealand fielded the unchanged side while Pakistan were forced to make three changes to the playing XI that featured in the 1st Test, with openers Ahmed Shehzad and Mohahamad Hafeez out due to injury and pacer Imran Khan rested. New Zealand at close of playon day 1 were 243-3, with opener Tom Latham smashing an unbeaten hundred. Here are the highlights of the opening day’s play.
Openers began positively: The opening pair of Tom Latham and Brendon McCullum batted with intent and made sure Pakistan bowlers toil hard for early wickets. Even though the two looked uneasy early on, but picked their spots once they got theireye in.Their partnership for the first wicket was worth 77 and it was pacer Ehsan Adil who separated the two just before the lunch.He removed McCullum, who was looking to pull, but found lone fielder at the deep mid-wicket.
Tom Latham and Kane Williamson build on:After McCullum’s departure Kane Williamson joined Latham in the middle and the two put on a solid 76-run stand. Both went on comfortably as Pakistan bowlers failed to scalp a wicket. However, it was spinner Zulfiqar Babar who bowled Williamson and New Zealand lost their second wicket on 153.
Tom Latham scores second ton: The left-hand opening batsman continued his good run as he smashed his second ton of Test career. Latham who scored hundred in the last Testbecame the first Kiwi opener in 24 years to score centuries in consecutive Tests. He was well supported by Ross Taylor from the other end.
Yasir Shah removes Ross Taylor:The third wicket stand between Latham and Taylor yielded 73 runs, but leg-spinner Yasir Shah late in the day broke the valuable stand when he removed Taylor. The right-hand batsman was caught superbly by Shan Masood at silly point. At Taylor’s dismissal New Zealand were 226-3.
Tom Latham and Corey Anderson stay unbeaten:Tom Latham made sure he does not throw his wicket away and after completing his century kept batting with determination. He remained unbeaten on 137 when play was called off and giving him company was Corey Anderson, who had added seven runs till close of play.