Despite Mohammad Rizwan’s impressive unbeaten score of 90, New Zealand secured a seven-wicket victory over Pakistan in the fourth T20I at Christchurch’s Hagley Oval, marking their fourth consecutive win in the five-match series and establishing a commanding 4-0 lead.
After being put into bat, Pakistan suffered an early blow as Saim Ayub failed to make an impact with the bat again and departed for 1 in the second over of the inning.
Pakistan scored 158 for five in 20 overs courtesy an undefeated 90-run knock from wicketkeeper-batter Rizwan. The Opening batter struck six fours and two sixes during his 63-ball innings. He added a 51-run partnership with Babar Azam (19, 11b, 2x4s, 1×6) and knitted a 40-run partnership for the fifth wicket with Iftikhar Ahmed (10, 14b).
Rizwan, while speaking in the post-match press conference, said that breaking his successful opening pair with Babar Azam in T20Is has negatively affected the team.
“You can say that it [breaking the opening pair] has hurt Pakistan,” Rizwan said.
“I can say that Babar bhai has a big heart. We both agreed that there is no issue [in splitting the opening pair]. We both told the management that they can try whatever combination they want. The difficulty arises when you break things that were already working well. However, management is looking at what can be extracted best from different combinations,” he added.
The fifth and final T20I of the series will take place at the same venue on Sunday.