Top IPL prediction: New Zealand score twice at Williamson’s doubleton

Kane Williamson scored his fifth 2 ton in Test cricket to extend his 159-run winning streak with Ishu Sodi who defeated Pakistan on the fourth day. It gave them a lead of 174 runs before the New Zealand spinners struck twice later in the day to regain the advantage.

The first half of Day 4 saw Pakistan face off with a showdown between Williamson and Sodi for over 1.5 hours of the session. The duo added just 79 runs in the first session, but set the tone that allowed New Zealand to make steady progress and take a healthy lead.

Both Soddy and Williamson were generally comfortable on pitches that offered only slow turns as rough spots were still far from the stumps. Naumann-Ali rolled around and tried to strike those spots to arouse suspicion, but did little to deter the duo, who could comfortably handle the run.

Ali beat Williamson to 116 on the pads and was about to pick a wicket when he passed the referee on the field. However, upon checking, I discovered that the ball had hit the outside of my foot stump. Pakistan’s luck in the review was still poor as it happened shortly after wasting one against Sodi. Mohammad Wasim Jr put the old ball back in and full he hit Sodhi with the ball but replays confirmed it wasn’t worth checking as his edge was too big on the inside. Not getting enough bites on the old ball, Pakistan took advantage of a third new ball when it became available. However, although the ball was hit quickly, the New Zealand hitter was less concerned. But it offered more opportunities. Sodhi slipped through an empty slip on his chain, where he broke through twice, once with a mill feather just minutes before his lunch break with Hamza, but none of the players on the field picked it up. Roll call never came, which allowed Sodhi to march and bring up 50 in the second session. Williamson interrupted his steady tapping with occasional lofts on the floor to keep Spinner guessing. He hit more shots in his second session and his backswing also proved effective despite being played out of the rough.

However, New Zealand slipped on the other side. Sodhi tried to give her Abrar a break in the leg and gained her leading edge and was caught midway. Tim Southee likewise he fell for a duck against Nauman Ali, Neil Wagner scored a gloved sweep to Abrar for his fifth, just two runs and he had three wickets in equal numbers. As it was over, Williamson feared he would be stranded without two tons. However, when Ajaz Patel parried 8 balls, Williamson hit a lofted 6 and 4 over cover to set a milestone and move past Brendon McCallum into New Zealand’s all-time list. It was also his second double against Pakistan, enough for Southey to declare immediately.

Armed with a first innings lead, New Zealand attacked the line and were positively received in Pakistan’s opening game. Abdullah Shafique and Imam ul Haq added his 47, the former halfway through he failed to loft Michael Bracewell’s attempted loft. The Imam remained positive and was not afraid to drive the weirdo out of the Raf, but there was a stutter on the other side. Shan Massood made a comfortable short 26-ball stay before being caught on the back foot by LBW against Sodhi

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