Exact cricbuzz prediction: Sarfaraz was the difference, says Southee after illustrated series

Sarfaraz scored a career-high 118, his first Test 100 since 2014, to help Pakistan secure a dramatic draw.

Tim Southey wrestled to victory for New Zealand in his first series. The 34-year-old believes this is due to Sarfaraz his Ahmed’s dream comeback in Pakistan.

His two Tests at Karachi ended with his series ending in a 0–0 draw, but New Zealand were able to win both, albeit with a slight light and his first win in nearly four years. was slowed by his Sarfaraz’s ferocious form in the 35-year-old’s first series.

After setting a difficult target of 319 wins, New Zealand felt a string of wins as they cut Pakistan to her 80 to 5.

Sarfaraz scored his 118, a career-high. It was his first Test 100 since 2014 and helped Pakistan secure a dramatic draw at Karachi’s National Stadium on Friday. “Sarfaraz have been great… not just today, but in the whole series,” Southey told reporters after the dark lights stopped play, with New Zealand just 15 runs from the win and Pakistan 15 from the win.

“He came out, played positive cricket, played hard-working cricket. For someone who hasn’t played in four years, he deserves credit.”

“We knew that something could happen in the second half of the test because of the nature of the surface, but Sarfaras was probably the difference. If we had gotten him earlier, we could have won.”

Sarfaraz’s glove job was pretty sloppy, but his scores of 86, 53, 78, and 118 earned him the honor of being named his Player of the Game and his Player of the Series honors. His counterattack also affected New Zealand bowling tactics, forcing tourists to postpone taking new balls.

“If he hadn’t played positive all day, he could have gotten a new ball because he could have had more runs.”

Southey said there was “a lot of good cricket” in the series, but the draw left him disappointed.

“They’re playing to win Test matches and we’re probably in a position to win both,” Southey said.

“It was pretty tough, but the guys worked hard and we were one pitch away from winning the series.

“Yes, it’s disappointing to leave (0-0), but I’m sure it will be the same in Pakistan.”

The team now competes in his three-game-a-day international series, which begins Monday.

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