Pakistan v New Zealand 1st Test Tips, Predictions and Match Preview - Back Pakistan to win opener

New Zealand batsman Kane Williamson

New Zealand had a below par tour of UAE so far, losing the T20I series 3-0 and drawing the three-match ODI series 1-1. How will the test series end?


The action now moves to the longer format and the first of the three-match Test series will be played in Abu Dhabi starting from Friday.

The hosts will be on a high from their recent two-match series against Australia, which they won 1-0. New Zealand haven’t had a match in this format since winning 1-0 at home against New Zealand in March. Will the rustiness play against the Kiwis?

Pakistan Match Preview


The Test series against Australia showed Pakistan’s strength with both bat and the ball. Fakhar Zaman had a successful initiation to the Tests, scoring 160 runs in the only Test he played, while captain Sarfraz Ahmed (190) got some form.

With Test specialists Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq and Harris Sohail in the ranks, Pakistan look a very strong outfit. The bowling looks even stronger as pacer Mohammad Abbas (17 wickets) showed his swing prowess in the series. 

New Zealand Match Preview 


The Kiwis were not seen in Test whites since March, when they won against England at home. Ross Taylor scored 166 runs in the series and going by the form he has shown in the white ball formats, the middle-order batsman will be crucial for the visitors.

Kane Williamson will be another big name adding substance to New Zealand. Their bowling looks thin, though, as New Zealand will depend a lot on Tim Southee and Trent Boult.

Match Up


The form of Pakistan bowlers is a huge positive for Pakistan, who are set to put an end to New Zealand dominance in Tests. It will boil down to how well the Kiwi batsmen can tackle the threat of the varied Pakistan bowling attack.

History & Statistics


Pakistan have won 24 of the 55 Tests against New Zealand, losing 10.
Pakistan won the lone Test payed between these sides at this venue, way back in 2014.
Pakistan have won four of the last six Test matches they played in Abu Dhabi.
Pakistan have won nine and drawn three of their last 16 Tests played in UAE.
Mohammad Abbas has 59 wickets in 10 Tests.

Key Players


Fakhar Zaman has shown that he has the right mental strength to be successful in all formats. His technique is not perfect for Tests, but is suited for the conditions here. The swashbuckling opener will once again look to make his mark with a big score at the top.

It will be a test of not just Williamson’s captaincy credentials, but also his batting efficiency. With Pakistan bowlers in such great form ahead of the series, Williamson will be the best bet for the visitors to keep them at bay.

Tips


Back Pakistan to win the Test at odds of $1.70 (Neds).

Back Kane Williamson to score a first innings fifty at odds of $2.25 (bet365).

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Pakistan v New Zealand 1st Test Tips, Predictions and Match Preview - Back Pakistan to win opener

New Zealand had a below par tour of UAE so far, losing the T20I series 3-0 and drawing the three-match ODI series 1-1. How will the test series end?

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