New Zealand skipper Kane Williamson has said that he and his troops are really "excited" ahead of the series-deciding encounter at Abu Dhabi, starting Monday, December 3.
The Kiwis showed immense spirit and carved out a narrow 4-run victory in the first Test, before being hammered by an innings & 16 runs against the Sarfaraz Ahmed led side in Dubai.
Hence, this is their chance to create history and become the first non-Asian side in a very long time to clinch to a series in UAE against Pakistan.
"We’re really excited to be involved in a decider here. We know how tough it is to come over to the UAE to play Pakistan, a very strong side that knows these conditions well. It’s a really exciting prospect and the guys are looking forward to it," Williamson was quoted by ICC before the match.
In response to hosts' score of 418/5d, New Zealand got bamboozled by the class of Yasir Shah as the leg-spinner simply ran through the Kiwis batting line up. He inflicted a major collapse in the first innings, as Kiwis were bundled out for 90 and came back to finish off the job for his team on Day 4.
Despite improved performances from Latham (50), Ross Taylor (82) and Henry Nicholls (77) helping them reach 312, the visitors succumbed to a massive defeat.
Reflecting back at the disappointing collapse, Williamson said, “It was about 45 minutes of madness and someone like Yasir Shah who’s an outstanding performer bowled very, very well and put us under pressure."
"It certainly turned the Test on its head from then on. To follow that with a very good batting effort on a wearing pitch was a really good sign," he signed off.
An unfortunate shoulder injury to the immensely skillful Mohammad Abbas during the second Test at Dubai has paved way for an opportunity for Shaheen Afridi to wear the Test whites for Pakistan.