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Pakistan dominates on day 1 after Hafeez ton

Opener builds important partnership with Misbah-ul-Haq as his side posts 281 for 3 on the first day of the final Test against New Zealand

Pakistan dominates on day 1 after Hafeez ton - Cricket News
Mohammad Hafeez scored his seventh test hundred, taking full advantage of the flat, grass-less wicket.
Mohammad Hafeez, the opener, returned from a hamstring injury to script a superb century to help Pakistan reach 281 for 3 at stumps on the first day of the third Test against New Zealand in Sharjah on Wednesday (November 26).
 
This was Hafeez's seventh test hundred, and the second of this series as he took full advantage of the flat, grass-less wicket at the Sharjah cricket stadium after Pakistan won a critical toss and decided to bat. He reached his hundred with a brace of boundaries off offspinner Mark Craig and then took a single. So far, he has hit 17 fours and two sixes in his innings.
 
Misbah-ul-Haq, the captain, remained unbeaten on 38 alongside Hafeez (178 not out).
 
New Zealand, desperate to square the series after losing the first Test in Abu Dhabi by a 248-run margin, and drawing the second in Dubai, recalled ace spinner Daniel Vettori in its playing XI.
 
The Pakistan batsmen played the bowlers comfortably until Craig went past Shan Masood's defense to knock down his middle stump. But Masood's dismissal did not deter Hafeez's approach, as he kept dispatching loose deliveries to the boundary.
 
Pakistan went to lunch at a score of 82 for 1. New Zealand, however, hit back in the post-lunch session by dismissing Azhar Ali (39) and in-form veteran Younis Khan for just five.


 
Ali, who shared a second-wicket partnership of 87 with Hafeez, offered a loose shot off Craig only to be caught safely in the second slip.
 
Younis was adjudged leg-before off Vettori. His dismissal was a relief for Brendon McCullum's side, as Younis has been in prime form, having scored four test hundreds in the last one month, with three coming against Australia and one against New Zealand in the first Test of this series. 

Meanwhile, Vettori, playing in his 112th test match for New Zealand, became the country’s most capped player ahead of former skipper Stephen Fleming.
 
Pakistan dropped Taufeeq Umar and Ehsan Adil for this match, paving the way for the inclusion of Mohammad Hafeez and pacer Mohammad Talha.
 
New Zealand has included three spinners in their line-up, with Vettori playing his first Test after 28 months.
 
Pakistan leads the three-match series 1-0, after winning the first Test in Abu Dhabi and drawing the second in Dubai.
 
Please click here to see the full scorecard and follow live ball-by-ball coverage of Pakistan v New Zealand from Sharjah.

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