Glenn Phillips snapped an unbeaten half-century as New Zealand secured a series win over Pakistan with a two-wicket victory in the third and final one-day international in Karachi on Friday.
Phillips struck 63 from 42 balls, hitting four sixes and as many fours, to rescue New Zealand from a precarious 181-5 run in their quest for a 281-run target.
His hitting dwarfed Fakhar Zaman’s 101 as Pakistan made it 280-9 in their 50 overs.
Coming in to bat for New Zealand needing 100 off 87 balls, Phillips added 64 for the seventh wicket with Mitchell Santner, who scored 17 from a match-changing position.
Captain Kane Williamson chipped in with 53 and Devon Conway hit an equally steady 52 before Phillips ended the chase with 11 balls to spare.
Phillips completed his first ODI fifty off just 28 balls, but fell off the next delivery when wicket-keeper Mohammad Rizwan failed to parry a catch from spinner Usama Mir.
New Zealand’s win sealed their first ODI series win in Pakistan in six tries and kept them top of the one-day standings.
“He (Phillips) wasn’t feeling very well, but he came out and played with a lot of freedom,” said Williamson, whose side have won seven of their last eight ODI series.
“I thought we were in the game at the middle of the stage, but I made a few mistakes. For Glenn to play that shot, and credit to Pakistan as well. It was a very close series.”
Pakistan captain Babar Azam said: “When Rizwan and Fakhar played, it looked like we would touch 300, but when wickets fall, it’s tough for new batsmen.
“We couldn’t execute in the last 10 overs with the ball.”
Williamson leveled the innings during his stands of 65 with Conway for the second wicket and then another 52 with Daryl Mitchell (31) for the next, but New Zealand lost four wickets in the space of 45 runs.
Agha Salman (2-42), who was sidelined, sacked Conway and then had Mitchell catch a wrong reverse sweep to break up the two partnerships. Williamson ran out of the fourth wicket.
Opener Zaman laid the foundation for a good total for Pakistan.
The left-hander hit 10 fours and a six after Pakistan won the toss and opted to bat first.
Zaman lifted Pakistan from 21-2 during a third-wicket stand of 154 with Rizwan, who made a polished 77 with six boundaries.
Pakistan got off to a poor start as they lost Shan Masood scoreless and Azam, the world’s highest-ranked ODI batsman, by just four.
Azam, who had two half-centuries in the first two matches, was stumped by Tom Latham off-spinner Michael Bracewell in the seventh over.
Zaman was left to rebuild the innings and took a strong single to reach the eighth-hundredth of him, his first triple-figure ODI score in Pakistan.
A leg-spinning Ish Sodhi broke the stands tossing to Rizwan, while Zaman ran out of room while attempting to steal a quick single.
Salman gave the innings a late boost by hitting 45 of 43 balls as New Zealand closer Tim Southee finished at 3-56.