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Guptill, Williamson record partnership helps New Zealand level series

Guptill, Williamson record partnership helps New Zealand level series
Martin Guptill (right) and Kane Williamson (left) now hold the record for the highest partnership for any wicket in T20Is.
©REUTERS / Action Images

New Zealand 171-0 (Guptill 87no) beat
Pakistan 168-7 (Akmal 56no) by 10 wickets
Second Twenty20 International in Hamilton

Martin Guptill and Kane Williamson shared a world-record partnership of unbeaten 171 runs as New Zealand romped home with 10 wickets chasing Pakistan's 168 in the second Twenty20 International in Hamilton. 

The mammoth partnership between the New Zealand openers was the highest for any wicket in T20Is as the Black Caps went on to level the series against Pakistan convincingly. 

Earlier, Pakistan won the toss and opted to bat first despite cloudy conditions. They went with an unchanged side.

Ross Taylor and Mitchell McClenaghan returned from injuries for New Zealand replacing Matt Henry and Trent Boult.

Mitchell Santner (1-29) opened the bowling for New Zealand which quite didn't work well for them as Mohammad Hafeez (19) smashed the left-arm spinner for 11 runs.

Corey Anderson (1-26) pulled things back with a tight one-run second over and eventually had Ahmed Shehzad (9) caught at long-off in the fourth over. Pakistan managed only 34 runs in the powerplay.

Hafeez's 23-ball vigil came to an end after he was holed out at deep mid-wicket off Santner immediately after the powerplay.

Sohaib Maqsood (18) got going with a six and a boundary in the eighth over to take the total to 49 for two.

But New Zealand kept building pressure as they conceded only 11 runs in the next two overs which led to the dismissal of Maqsood as he was caught at long-off to give Grant Elliott (1-36) his first wicket.

Umar Akmal (56 not out) injected the much needed momentum for Pakistan as he hit Santner for consecutive sixes in the 13th over to take Pakistan to 91 for three. He brought up the 50-run stand with Shoaib Malik (39) off 24 deliveries.

However, McClenaghan (2-23) returned in the 17th over and castled Malik. Pakistan were 131 for four at the end of 17 overs.

Shahid Afridi (7) started the 18th over with a six but perished in the very next delivery finding Williamson at mid-off.

The real push came for Pakistan in the 19th over when Akmal tormented McClenaghan for 14 runs in the first three deliveries and reached his fifty off 23 deliveries.

However, a steady final over from Adam Milne (1-37) where he conceded just seven runs restricted Pakistan to 168 for seven in the 20 overs with Akmal remaining unbeaten on 56.

McClenaghan was the pick of the New Zealand bowlers having picked two wickets and an economy of just 5.75. Santner, Milne, Anderson and Elliott managed a wicket apiece. 

Chasing over eight an over, New Zealand got to a perfect start with Williamson (72 not out) and Guptill (87 not out) bringing the 50-run stand in five overs.

Imad Wasim (0-32) bowled a couple of tidy overs putting a brake to the New Zealand scoring but the duo looked steady in their approach as they brought the 100-run stand in 72 deliveries.

Mohammad Amir (0-34) conceded 15 runs in his third over with Williamson and Guptill plundering him for three boundaries combined in the 13th over to bring their respective fifties.

With New Zealand needing just 54 to win from the last seven overs, Guptill went berserk at Afridi (0-38) hitting him for a couple of sixes and a four in the 15th over.

New Zealand eventually reached the target in the 18th over with all 10 wickets in hand as the pair went on to notch the world-record for the highest partnership in T20Is.

The win has also helped New Zealand level the series 1-1 with one more game to go.

© Cricket World 2016