Mirpur: Kamran Akmal and Mohammad Hafeez made the difference with stroke-filled half-centuries to guide Pakistan to a nervy six-wicket win that came in the penultimate ball over New Zealand in their first ICC World Twenty20 warm-up game at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium here on Monday.
Kamran (52 in 45 balls) and Hafeez (55 in 39) piled on the misery for New Zealand with an 83-run second-wicket stand after Pakistan’s pacers had restricted New Zealand to 145 for nine. The two got together at 38 for 1 in the fourth over and took Pakistan within kissing distance of the target before Sohaib Maqsood (16 not out in eight balls) hit a boundary to take Pakistan past the target.
Kamran batted with great ease and eventually retired on 52 to make way for the middle-order batsmen to get a hit. Hafeez, who raced his way to a half-century in the 14th over, dropped his guard after getting to the landmark and Nathan McCullum got the better off him, but by then Pakistan had gotten to within 22 runs of the target with four overs left.