Pakistan wins toss, elects to bat in 1st test
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq won his third successive toss and elected to bat in the first test against New Zealand on Sunday.
Pakistan kept faith in the same playing XI that defeated Australia by 356 runs in the second test at the same venue last Monday to clinch the series 2-0.
Misbah wanted to put the historic victory against Australia behind the team ,saying “this is a new series, we will try to focus and do our basics right.”
Pakistan persisted with Mohammad Hafeez despite the opening batsman scoring only 48 runs in his three test innings against Australia and took four wickets.
New Zealand included two spinners — Indian-born legspinner Ish Sodhi and offspinner Mark Craig — with the Sheikh Zayed Stadium wicket having a history of assisting slow bowlers as the match progresses.
New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum hoped to keep Pakistan “to a relatively low total” in the first innings as he expected the wicket to deteriorate.
Pakistan has not lost a test series to New Zealand since Black Caps won 2-0 in 1985.
Pakistan: Misbah-ul-Haq (captain), Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Azhar Ali, Younis Khan, Asad Shafiq, Sarfraz Ahmed, Zulfiqar Babar, Imran Khan, Yasir Shah, Rahat Ali.
New Zealand: Brendon McCullum (captain), Tom Latham, Kane Williamson, Ross Taylor, Corey Anderson, James Neesham, BJ Watling, Tim Southee, Mark Craig, Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult.