Kane Williamson leads New Zealand fightback in first Pakistan Test

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New Zealand captain Kane Williamson was within reach of his 23rd Test century after he rebuilt the house facet’s innings and guided them to a stable 222-Three on the finish of the opening day of the first Test towards Pakistan in Mount Maunganui on Saturday.

Williamson, who missed the final Test towards West Indies as he awaited the start of his first little one, was on 94 at Bay Oval with Henry Nicholls on 42 as New Zealand battled for a lot of the day towards Pakistan’s disciplined and correct bowling assault.

The 30-year-old Williamson mixed with Ross Taylor (70) in a 120-run partnership to resurrect the innings after Shaheen Afridi vindicated stand-in captain Mohammad Rizwan’s resolution to bowl first on the grassy wicket.

Shaheen snapped up Tom Latham (4) and Tom Blundell (5) to cut back the hosts to 13-2 contained in the first 45 minutes.

New Zealand’s batsmen have been unable to get into their consolation zone because the bowlers always challenged them, inducing false pictures and edges that flew agonisingly near fielders.

“Shaheen bowled fantastically well,” Taylor stated. “And (Mohammad) Abbas you feel like he’s not giving you anything,” he added of the veteran’s figures of 0-25 from 21 overs.

“To get through to 222-3 after those early wickets, we definitely would have taken that at the start of the day.”

Williamson and Taylor, who grew to become New Zealand’s most capped participant on Saturday, have been capable of take their facet by way of to 55 for 2 at lunch then dominated the center session.

Taylor marked his 438th worldwide match throughout all three codecs along with his 34th Test half-century when he swept legspinner Yasir Shah nice for his eighth boundary.

But simply as he was beginning to speed up the run fee after tea and searching properly set for his 20th Test century, the veteran grew to become Shaheen’s third wicket.

Williamson and Nicholls, who was dropped on six at nice leg, then drove the facet by way of to stumps with their unbroken 89-run partnership, though the captain had a slice of luck when dropped on 86 by Haris Sohail in the slips off Shaheen.

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