Pakistan's previous best top-order partnership during the six limited-over matches played on tour so far was just 14. The pair made the most of Eden Park's short boundaries to comfortably dispatch anything short or wide for four. They punished pacemen Ben Wheeler and Seth Rance, who both conceded 13 runs in an over, prompting New Zealand to introduce spinners Ish Sodhi and Mitchell Santner.
Pakistan win second T20 by 48 runs to level series 1-1 - New Zealand 153 all out in reply to Pakistan's 201-4. Watch the series decider on Sunday from 5.55am on Sky Sports Cricket! https://t.co/MRQGXLGsqQ #NZvPAK pic.twitter.com/M6xGOjzZY6— Sky Sports Cricket (@SkyCricket) January 25, 2018
Fakhar responded by belting three sixes off Santner's first over, bringing up his maiden T20 half century soon after off 26 balls. Rance finally broke through in the ninth over, deceiving Ahmed with a slower ball that carried straight to Colin de Grandhomme on the boundary. Fakhar fell in the next over but Sarfraz Ahmed and Babar kept the scoreboard ticking over, taking Pakistan to 137 for two with five overs remaining.
#Pakistan wins the second T-20 International match against New Zealand by 48 runs in Auckland on Thursday. Batting first, Pakistan scored 201 for the loss of 4 wickets in allotted 20 overs. Fakhar Zaman of Pakistan was declared Man of the Match. pic.twitter.com/wagQD7DgFt— Govt of Pakistan (@pid_gov) January 25, 2018
Sarfraz in particular displayed a confidence that had so far eluded him on tour to make 41 off 24 deliveries. Babar brought up his 50 and took the team past 200 with a four off the final ball of the innings. Pakistan's bowling attack capitalised on the good work from their batsmen by dislodging New Zealand's top order cheaply.
RESULT: Pakistan won by 48 runs New Zealand 153/10 (18.3/20 ov, target: 202) v Pakistanhttps://t.co/A82QNLAwqi— ESPNcricinfo scores (@ESPNscorecard) January 25, 2018