All the action from the final day of the third and final test between the Black Caps and Pakistan.

A sensational partnership between Kane Williamson and Henry Nicholls has not only saved the Black Caps from potential peril - it's put them in the box seat for a famous away test series win.

Joining forces at 60-4, with the Black Caps still trailing Pakistan by 14 runs, Williamson and Nicholls needed to produce something special to stop a hefty defeat, and boy, did they deliver.

By the end of the day, a casual 390 minutes after they had paired up, the Black Caps were sitting pretty at 272-4 – a lead of 198 runs.


It's a position of power – some quick runs in the first session on day five can lead to a declaration, and force Pakistan into a tricky fourth innings chase on a wicket that could still produce some demons on the final day.

For the first time all series, the Black Caps utterly dominated a day. Williamson was brilliant, bringing up his 19th test century in a sublime innings. The Black Caps captain attacked width against the Pakistan seamers – especially potent through cover and mid-wicket - and again looked a class above when playing against spin as he reached 139 at stumps.

In the past five years, Williamson averages 67.16 in when batting in the second innings, nearly 15 runs higher than the next qualified batsman, and his effort on the Abu Dhabi wicket was as good as any he had previously produced.

Nicholls was a perfect partner, playing a steady hand with few rash shots as he finished the day unbeaten on 90. The pair added an unbroken 212 – the highest fifth wicket partnership for the Black Caps against Pakistan.

As a result, their chances of a first away test series win over Pakistan in 49 years look promising. Before, the realistic path to victory required another Pakistan batting collapse. Now, the Black Caps can set the agenda, making Pakistan have to play aggressively if they want to win, and in turn creating opportunities for their bowlers.

It must be said though, that after all of this, a draw does loom as the most likely result. It would be anti-climactic, but Pakistan could decide to shut up shop on the final day if they feel their chances of victory are minimal.