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Who would have predicted that: Shoaib Akhtar 6/16 terrorises New Zealand with his best-ever ODI figures

Shoaib Akhtar of Pakistan celebrates a wicket
Shoaib Akhtar of Pakistan celebrates a wicket

In our feature series - Who would have predicted that? – we are looking back at matches where there were big upsets or extraordinary individual performances that turned matches on their head.


New Zealand were already on the back foot arriving in Pakistan in 2002 in the absence of four of their main players including skipper Stephen Fleming. They were never given a big chance of winning in the unfamiliar subcontinental conditions but that they would start their tour on such a hapless note was hardly expected.


Match Summary


Pakistan 275/6 (50 overs) - Mohammad Yousuf 125 (155), Younis Khan 69 (81); Daryl Tuffey 2/24 (6), Ian Butler 2/49 (7)

New Zealand 122 (30 overs) - Nathan Astle 25 (27), Matt Horne 22 (34); Shoaib Akhtar 6/16 (9), Saqlain Mushtaq 1/22 (4)

Result - Pakistan won by 153 runs


After Imran Nazir, Shahid Afridi and Inzamam-ul-Haq threw their wickets away, Mohammad Yousuf and Younis Khan stabilized Pakistan's inning with a 161-run partnership off 192 balls. 

Mohammad Yousuf, coming on the back of a century in the Sharjah Cup only the week before, scored his 6th ODI ton with 125 off 155 deliveries. A stroke-filled 30 from Abdul Razzaq took Pakistan to 275.


Fall of wickets: 1-15 (Shahid Afridi, 2.3 ov), 2-15 (Imran Nazir, 2.6 ov), 3-49 (Inzamam-ul-Haq, 12.3 ov), 4-210 (Younis Khan, 43.3 ov), 5-247 (Mohammad Yousuf, 47.5 ov), 6-270 (Wasim Akram, 49.5 ov)



New Zealand openers Matt Horne and Nathan Astle started on a rapid note with the team crossing the 50-run mark within 10 overs. However, once stand-in skipper Craig McMillan was caught at mid-on while attempting a hook off Shoaib Akhtar to give the pacer his 100th wicket in his 60th match, the Rawalpindi Express did not look back.

Akhtar bowled with scary pace, dismissing 6 of the New Zealand batsmen for just 16 runs, his best figures in ODI cricket.

Such was his terror among the Kiwi tailenders that they were more focused on protecting their body rather than their stumps. The result was that New Zealand were dismissed for just 122 within 30 overs to lose the match by 153 runs.


Fall of wickets: 1-53 (Nathan Astle, 9.5 ov), 2-59 (Lou Vincent, 10.3 ov), 3-60 (Matt Horne, 11.1 ov), 4-72 (Craig McMillan, 13.6 ov), 5-74 (Jacob Oram, 15.3 ov), 6-77 (Robbie Hart, 17.2 ov), 7-92 (Chris Harris, 20.6 ov), 8-92 (Andre Adams, 21.4 ov), 9-105 (Brooke Walker, 25.2 ov), 10-122 (Ian Butler, 29.6 ov)




Pakistan - Imran Nazir, Shahid Afridi, Mohammad Yousuf, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Abdul Razzaq, Wasim Akram, Rashid Latif (wk), Waqar Younis (c), Saqlain Mushtaq, Shoaib Akhtar 

New Zealand - Matt Horne, Nathan Astle, Lou Vincent, Craig McMillan (c), Chris Harris, Jacob Oram, Robbie Hart (wk), Andre Adams, Brooke Walker, Daryl Tuffey, Ian Butler


Match Details


Match: PAK v NZ, 1st ODI, New Zealand in Pakistan ODI Series, 2002 

Date: Sunday, April 21, 2002 

Toss: Pakistan won the toss and odecided to bat 

Venue: National Stadium, Karachi 

Umpires: Steve Bucknor, Nadeem Ghauri 

Third Umpire: Aleem Dar 

Match Referee: Mike Procter 


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