Yousuf hails bowling attack
Asif nine wicket haul leaves Pakistan captain in raptures
By Elliot Ball. Last Updated: December 6, 2009 12:21pm
Pakistan strolled to victory in Wellington
Mohammad Yousuf lauded his bowling attack after Pakistan levelled the three-match Test series with a comprehensive 141-run win over New Zealand in Wellington.
"After a long time out it is difficult to bowl like I did but my rhythm is coming and hopefully I can do well in the next game"
Mohammad Asif Quotes of the week
The Pakistan captain saw his side continue their sparkling form with the ball as Mohammad Asif starred, producing a man-of-the-match performance of nine wickets for 107.
Asif added another five wickets to his haul in the second innings as the Black Caps failed to come close to the colossal 405 needed for victory after Pakistan scored 239.
The 26-year-old fast medium bowler continued his comeback from injury and a drugs ban by dismissing New Zealand's top three of Tim McIntosh, Martin Guptill and Daniel Flynn, plus the crucial scalp of Daniel Vettori.
Asif wrapped up the match by claiming the wicket of Iain O'Brien, who scored a career-high 31 in his last Test at his home ground.
It was also a good day for Danish Kaneria, who replaced Saeed Ajmal for this Test, as the leg-spinner became the fourth highest Test wicket-taker behind Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis and Imran Khan with his three for 74.
And a delighted Yousuf said after the win: "The whole team is very happy and credit must go to the whole team they worked very hard, especially the bowlers.
"I'm pleased with the way Danish Kaneria bowled on this track."
Asif admitted he was enjoying the New Zealand conditions after also taking eight wickets for 151 runs in the series-opening loss in Dunedin.
"I'm enjoying it here. After a long time out it is difficult to bowl like I did but my rhythm is coming and hopefully I can do well in the next game," he said.
"I'm very happy we won this game. The last match was 50-50, it came down to the last hour. But today thankfully we won. We're working hard."
New Zealand skipper Vettori was left to lament another poor batting display by his side, particularly the first innings where they failed to reach triple figures.
"To bowl a team out for roughly 250 in both innings is a fantastic effort but we just couldn't back it up with the bat. That's been our problem for a long time.
Vettori, who is also on the selection panel, hinted changes to the batting line-up were likely for the series decider in Napier.
Opener Tim McIntosh is likely to be one feeling some pressure after scoring four and two, while Peter Fulton (duck and 13) could be another in the firing line.
Vettori added: "In our top six Ross Taylor is the only one stepping up and leading.
"I think a couple of guys are going to come under severe scrutiny. That's only right.
"That's the nature of Test cricket, you get some chances but not many. There are going to be some guys that are probably going to have some tough news."