Kiwis beat Pakistan by 4 runs

New Zealand beat Pakistan by 4 runs in the fifth one-day international at Wellington.

updated: February 25, 2007 10:05 IST
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New Zealand beat Pakistan by 4 runs in the fifth one-day international at Wellington. Chasing New Zealand's score of 307, Pakistan fell short despite a stunning counter-assault by Abdul Razzaq who made 89 runs off 40 balls. Hamish Marshall made 84 and Craig McMillan 81 from as many balls as New Zealand posted 307 for 8 batting first in its fifth one-day cricket international against Pakistan here today. A complete batting performance carried New Zealand to its highest total in one-day matches in New Zealand, also its highest against Pakistan, and left the tourists needing 6.16 runs per over to win. Marshall reached his fifth half century in 10 one-day internationals, all of which have been against Pakistan, and maintained a young career average of 52 runs per innings. He put on 157 with McMillan for the fourth wicket to set New Zealand on course for a huge total after it had begun to lose its way at 73-3 in the 16th over. Late innings knocks of 36 from 20 balls from Chris Cairns, who hit five fours and a six, and 18 from nine balls by Jacob Oram, who hit two sixes in the final over, completed New Zealand's domination of a powerful Pakistan attack. Shoaib Akhtar picked up two wickets in his spell to finish with 2-46 but Shabbir Ahmed gave up 63 runs and Mohammad Sami 73 from their 10-over spells. Marshall continued a personal feast from Pakistan's bowlers. He scored a century and two half centuries during New Zealand's five-match series in Pakistan in December and has continued to score freely in the return series. McMillan shrugged off inconsistent form to produce one of his finest one-day innings. He hit eight fours and two sixes in a stay at the crease of only 97 minutes, reaching his 50 from 61 balls and adding 31 more from his last 20 deliveries. He put on 100 runs with Marshall from only 117 balls and shook the bowlers with his aggression and improvised stroke play. Cairns also made a return to form. He came to the wicket when New Zealand was already scoring at almost six an over and immediately joined in the run-spree. He scored with straight-hit fours and flat-bat sixes and seemed set for a higher score before he was run out in the late dash for runs. New Zealand's previous highest score against Pakistan was 291, made in Lahore last year. New Zealand already have an unassailable 3-1 lead in the five-match series. (AP)