Pakistan achieved a significant milestone by registering their 500th ODI win with a comfortable 5-wicket victory against New Zealand. Pakistan joined Australia and India in the elite list of ODI teams to reach this mark. This victory was achieved in their 949th ODI outing since their debut in February 1973. Australia leads the list with 594 wins, followed by India with 539. The landmark victory comes after Pakistan’s first win in the format in their second ODI appearance against England in August 1974.
Pakistan had to work for their 500th ODI win after New Zealand set a competitive total of 288/7, thanks to Daryl Mitchell’s impressive 113 and Will Young’s brisk 86. Fakhar Zaman opened the innings for Pakistan and, along with Imam-ul-Haq, set a solid foundation. Zaman went on to score a fine 117 from 114 balls, while Imam accounted for 60 as the duo started the chase with a 124-run partnership for the first wicket. Skipper Babar Azam contributed with important runs before falling just one short of his half-century, while Mohammad Rizwan chipped in with a 34-ball 42* to help complete the chase for his side in 48.3 overs.
Both New Zealand and Pakistan have secured their direct qualification spot in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, to be played in October-November in India. Tom Latham’s side impressed in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League cycle, currently sitting on top of the standings with 16 wins in 24 games. Pakistan are fifth in the standings with 13 wins in 21 games. Both teams will look to make the best of the remaining four ODIs of the series with a focus on preparations for the fast-approaching marquee event.
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