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22 December 2020 10:39

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22:46 Local Time, 09:46 GMT, 15:16 IST: Ah, Pakistan. Quite a normal day on the park, acing a chase, choking then, threatening to mess up, and then seeing it through. Again, Just Pakistan things. It's rather disappointing when they do things normally. Never mind.

This one's going down as Rizwan's chase, stepping up perhaps for the first time in this format after getting a promotion over some bigger names. Younis Khan in a mid-match interveiew said he was happy to see Rizwan play anchor while the others went hard around him, but he did a bit of both himself. Anchored at the start, stepped up the gas, and kept swinging and getting everything off the middle. Hafeez gave him good company, and just when things seemed to be heading towards a simple finish with the asking rate at just above a-run-a-ball, there came the choke--3 overs | 4 wickets. Now a 7-ball 14 at the close might not be a big deal, but this is Pakistan, and Iftikhar Ahmed deserves serious credit.

Okay, here come the presentations.. New Zealand vs Pakistan Napier T20I: The dead-rubber third T20I match was stopped due an unexpected delay at the McLean Park. During the third T20I of the ongoing Pakistan's tour of New Zealand in Napier, New Zealand scored 173/6 in their allotted quota of 20 overs after Pakistan captain Shadab Khan won the toss and elected to field. While the hosts thrived on the back of blistering knocks by wicket-keeper batsman Tim Seifert (35) and batsman Glenn Phillips (31), it was Devon Conway's second T20I half-century which kept the innings together. Coming in to bat at No. 4 in the sixth over, Conway departed in the last over after scoring 63 (45) with the help of seven fours and a six.

As for the Pakistani bowlers, all-rounder Faheem Ashraf was the pick of the bowlers with bowling figures of 4-0-20-3. Apart from Ashraf, pacers Shaheen Afridi and Haris Rauf picked a couple of wickets each but ended up being on the expensive side with conceding 43 and 44 runs respectively. Why was New Zealand vs Pakistan Napier T20I halted in the first innings? As was the case during the first ODI between New Zealand and India at the same venue early last year, play was halted (stopped) due to an unexpected reason. Due to an excessive sun-glare between two stands making it difficult for the players to spot the ball, players had to break for around 15 minutes before resuming play.

"For me personally, I could not spot the slower ball that he bowled," Phillips was heard on the stump mic referring to a Haris Rauf slower delivery which he had faced right before the play got halted. With New Zealand already winning the first two T20Is, they have already gained an unassailable 2-0 lead in the three-match series. How Twitterati reacted: Sun has stopped play at Napier! Reminds me of cricket in Rawalpindi, where there used to be a 10-15 mins break, even in Tests, due to dazzling sunlight. #NZvPak — Mazher Arshad (@MazherArshad) December 22, 2020 For more cricket-related news, click here. Sun-glare stopped the third and final T20I between New Zealand and Pakistan at the McLean Park, Napier on Tuesday. This is not the first time the venue has witnessed such an incident. A similar incident happened last year when India toured NZ. Also Read - Live Streaming Cricket, New Zealand vs Pakistan 3rd T20I: When And Where to Watch NZ vs PAK Streaming Live Cricket Match McLean Park Batting first, the hosts were 85 for three in the 12th over when umpires halted the match for some discussion. The play was halted and it was later learnt that it is because the Sun was beating down right between the stands and making it difficult for the players to spot the ball. Also Read - NZ vs PAK Dream11 Team Prediction 3rd T20I: Captain, Fantasy Playing Tips For Today's New Zealand vs Pakistan Match at McLean Park in Napier, 11:30 AM IST December 22 Tuesday Green Phillips – who was in the middle – was heard saying: "For me personally, I could not stop the slower ball that he (Haris Rauf) bowled." Also Read - Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) Likely to Host 3rd Test Between India-Australia After Rise in COVID-19 Cases Sydney: Report Seemed like that got netizens going as they reacted, some reactions were hilarious: Check tweets: Sun stops play 2020 has peaked — Dennis Misbahahahaha (@DennisCricket_) December 22, 2020 Rain stops play. Sure, okay Napier: Sun stops play Wellington: wind, we have heavier bails, if you need them. — Michael Colhoun (@michaelcolhoun) December 22, 2020 Bright shining sun stops the play between New Zealand and Pakistan at Napier. #Cricket pic.twitter.com/RTdLAGPD6D — VARUN BHASIN (@varun4bhasin) December 22, 2020 We've heard of rain stops play, bad light stops play now sun stops play. #NZvPAK — Rohan Mamtora (@RohanMamtora) December 22, 2020 Sun stops play has happened. Just Napier things. — Shubham Pandey (@iPandeyshubham) December 22, 2020 Put in to bat first, the hosts – who have already pocketed the series – posted 173 for seven in 20 overs. Devon Conway was the pick of the batsmen as he scored 63 off 45 balls. At the time of filing the copy, Pakistan was 113 for two in 14 overs. Mohammad Rizwan is in the middle and going strong and he has Khushdil Shah for company. Pakistan need 61 runs in 36 balls. New Zealand's Kane Williamson (R) plays a shot as Pakistan's wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan looks on during the second T20 international cricket match between New Zealand and Pakistan at Seddon Park in Hamilton on December 20, 2020. -AFP In their previous T20I series against Pakistan, the Black Caps had lost 0-3 in UAE in 2018. Mohammad Hafeez has been the key for Pakistan in the shortest format this year. Former skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed ignored again NAPIER: New Zealand has set a target of 174 runs for Pakistan to win the final T20I of the Pakistan vs New Zealand series at McLean Park Today. NZ's Devon Conway stood out with an innings of 63 runs, while Tim Seifert was dismissed for 35 runs and Glenn Phillips for 31 runs. Pakistani bowler Faheem Ashraf took three wickets, while Shahid Afridi and haris Rauf took two wickets each. New Zealand scored 173 runs for a loss of 7 wickets. Before the match, Pakistan skipper Shadab Khan has won the toss and opted to field first in the final T20I against New Zealand at McLean Park today. Pakistan made three changes in the playing XI but Sarfaraz Ahmed was not picked. Hussain Talat, Mohammad Hasnain and Iftikhar Ahmed have been included for the third match in place of Abdullah Shafiqe, Wahab Riaz and Imad Wasim. Speaking after the toss, Shadab Khan said conditions are different and many players are playing here for the first time. "The young cricketers are definitely learning from this tour," said the skipper. Read more: Why did Pakistan lose T20 series against New Zealand? Meanwhile, Kane Williamson said they made no changes in the squad adding they would try to set a good target for the visitors. New Zealand completed back-to-back T20I series wins after Sunday's victory in Hamilton and seem to be shaping up well for the ICC Men's T20 World Cup next year. Read more: Babar Azam should be called back immediately from New Zealand, urges Sarfraz Nawaz Squads: Pakistan: Haider Ali, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Shadab Khan (capt), Mohammad Hafeez, Hussain Talat, Khushdil Shah, Iftikhar Ahmed, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Hasnain, Haris Rauf and Shaheen Afridi New Zealand: Martin Guptill, Tim Seifert (wk), Kane Williamson (capt), Devon Conway, Glenn Phillips, James Neesham, Kyle Jamieson, Ish Sodhi, Scott Kuggeleijn, Tim Southee and Trent Boult