Karachi : Starved off assistance from pitches back home, New Zealand spinner Mitchell Santner is loving bowling in Pakistan and wants to take a piece of the Karachi pitch home.
Though Santner has played only two ODIs in Pakistan in this series, he loves watching the ball turn sharply on the Karachi pitch, which he rarely gets to see on wickets in New Zealand.
He was part of a four-pronged spin attack that helped New Zealand level their three-match ODI series with Pakistan at 1-1 on Wednesday night with a 79-run win in the second ODI.
The left-arm spinner took the key wicket of Mohammad Rizwan to derail Pakistan’s chase of New Zealand’s 261 batting first on a pitch which offered plenty of bounce and turn.
Santner, Michael Bracewell, Sodhi and Glenn Phillips combined to collect 5-114 from their 30 overs to assure the visitors held the upper hand throughout Pakistan’s reply.
“It’s nice when the wickets spin like today … [I’ll] try and wrap this wicket up and take it back to New Zealand, cos it doesn’t really do that at home,” Santner said after the match.
“Every time we come to the subcontinent it’s obviously enjoyable as a spin bowler and today was no different. It was nice to spin a few and build some pressure that way.”
New Zealand are next scheduled to tour India next week for a white-ball series and with the ODI World Cup scheduled in India in October-November, Santner can expect a similar experience.
Though the New Zealand spin quartet did not get the same amount of success as Pakistan left-armer Mohammad Nawaz, who claimed 4-38 from his 10 overs, Santner said they bowled well in tandem.
“We bowled quite well in partnerships and never gave easy boundaries away against some very good batters,” Santner said. “It definitely spun more than we thought – not sure what that was, maybe a bit cold and a bit tacky.
Playing the extra spinner probably helped as well. We were reasonably happy with the score, but we knew we had to bowl well and try and build up pressure, try and get that rate high and then try and get wickets through pressure,” Shatner told the New Zealand media after the match.
New Zealand will wind up their tour of Pakistan with the third ODI on Friday at Karachi before they cross the border to India for a white-ball series comprising three T20Is and as many ODIs.