Final match a great spectacle: Fleming
New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming was a relieved man after his team won a thrilling final one-day international against Pakistan.india Updated: Jan 17, 2004 16:38 IST
New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming was a relieved man after his team won a thrilling final one-day international against Pakistan by just four runs on Saturday to take the five-match series 4-1.
Pakistan all rounder Abdul Razzaq set up a grandstand finish with a 40-ball 89, including five sixes, and had he not got out in the penultimate over playing another expansive shot Pakistan would surely have won a memorable game.
"The standard of cricket today was great and the win sets up the rest of the summer with the series against South Africa coming up," Fleming told reporters before singing Razzaq's praises.
"Day in and day out this guy (Razzaq) is by far the best hitter I've seen," Fleming added. "He can turn matches just like that."
New Zealand scored 307 after winning the toss thanks chiefly to a record fourth-wicket partnership of 157 between Craig McMillan (81) and Hamish Marshall (84), but Pakistan were always confident of reaching their target on an excellent batting track.
Razzaq took a liking to the bowling of Andre Adams but it was the medium-pacer who got his revenge when the batsman tried to loft the ball over long off and was well caught by Marshall inches from the turf.
Pakistan coach Javed Miandad said Pakistan's effort would give them confidence for next month's historic home series against India but felt the margin of defeat in the series was harsh.
"We weren't as bad as 4-1 losers," he said. "At least we won the test series, so we can say the tour was a success."