Pakistan are the undisputed masters of inexplicable cricketing collapses, but they outdid themselves against New Zealand.
Pakistan took control of the Test at Abu Dhabi on the third day, with Yasir Shah’s leg spin precipitating a collapse of 6/29 to have the Kiwis out for 249 and leaving a chase of just 176 for victory.
Pakistan appeared to be cruising to a regulation victory at 3/130, but then appeared to remember that they are still, in fact, Pakistan.
Asad Shafiq got out caught behind before the rot really set in when Babar Azam and Azhar Ali pulled off the mother of all mix ups leading to Babar being catastrophically run out.
This precipitated a few rushes of blood, with Bilal Asif throwing his wicket away:
And Hasan Ali inexplicably trying to belt the ball into Dubai with just 12 runs required:
Debutant Kiwi spinner Ajaz Patel completed the remarkable comeback with Pakistan just five agonising runs short of the target, sneaking one past the defence of Azhar Ali, whose battling 65 was nearly enough for Pakistan.
His immediate review didn’t help him, and the Kiwis came away from Abu Dhabi with a win for the ages.
Patel was named man of the match for his 5/59 on debut in the second innings, including four of the last five to fall.
NZ lead the three match series 1-0.