Rehman spins Pakistan into contention

Abdul Rehman produced sustained, tight spell of left-arm spin bowling to take three wickets for 51 runs.


Reuters January 07, 2011

HAMILTON: Pakistan’s Abdul Rehman produced a sustained, tight spell of left-arm spin bowling to take three wickets for 51 runs as New Zealand scrambled to 260 for seven at the close of play on the first day of the first Test.

Kane Williamson was on 44 while pace bowler Tim Southee was on 56, his second test half century, after the hosts had appeared to be in control on 78 for one at lunch only for Pakistan to seize the advantage in the middle session.

Rehman executes perfect bowling plan

Rehman, who was introduced for one over in the first session, bowled five successive maidens after the lunch break and 29 overs unchanged before the second new ball was taken, tying down the normally free-flowing New Zealand batsmen.

“I expected [to be bowling on the first day] because the pitch looked quite flat and I prepared in my mind to bowl for around 20 to 30 overs,” said Rehman.

“Spin on the first day is good for spinners and good for me as well. It will definitely spin on day three and day four.”

New Zealand lost four wickets after lunch and the visitors’ momentum continued after tea when debutant wicket-keeper Reece Young was harshly adjudged leg-before for 14 off Rehman.

Captain Daniel Vettori’s dismissal, however, was more definitive when he trapped by a full delivery from Tanvir Ahmed for a two-ball duck.

Guptill optimistic

Guptill scored 50 and combined with McCullum in an 83-run second-wicket partnership to re-establish New Zealand’s innings before Rehman tied the batsmen down during the middle session.

“To put up that score with Brendon was great but we lost our way after lunch with a few wickets, it’s just the way cricket goes,” said Guptill. “We have got to go out tomorrow and try and get as many runs as we possibly can, and try our best to bowl them out.

“It’s a good pitch, it’s quite flat and a little bit slow but you’ve got to work for your runs if you bowl in the right areas.”

He also revealed his desire to reach a total of 300. “It’s going to be hard, but we have to bowl in our areas and be demanding and be at them every ball to do that, and give them absolutely nothing.”

Published in The Express Tribune, January 8th, 2011.

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