Pak vs NZ: Pakistan scores solid 269-1 against NZ at stumps, Day 1Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: Ahmed Shehzad hit a spirited unbeaten century and shared a record-breaking opening stand of 178 with Mohammad Hafeez to steer Pakistan to a commanding 269-1 at stumps on the first
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates: Ahmed Shehzad hit a spirited unbeaten century and shared a record-breaking opening stand of 178 with Mohammad Hafeez to steer Pakistan to a commanding 269-1 at stumps on the first day of the first test against New Zealand on Sunday.
Shehzad made the Black Caps pay heavily for a missed stumping on 16 before cruising to 126 off 290 balls, hitting 14 fours after captain Misbah-ul-Haq won his third successive toss and chose to bat.
Azhar Ali, who was also dropped by wicketkeeper BJ Watling on 31, was not out on 46.
Shehzad bettered Pakistan's 24-year-old record for the first wicket against New Zealand by putting on 178 before Hafeez missed out on his first hundred in over two years. Hafeez was caught and bowled by Corey Anderson for 96 off 137 balls, hitting 10 boundaries.
Former captain Ramiz Raja and Shoaib Mohammad held the previous record when they put on 172 runs against New Zealand at Karachi in 1990.
New Zealand bowlers toiled hard for the entire day on a slow wicket without much reward and on the same venue where Pakistan thrashed Australia by 356 runs only six days ago for a 2-0 victory in the series.
Offspinner Mark Craig created New Zealand's two chances but Watling fumbled on both occasions in a disappointing opening day of the three-test series for captain Brendon McCullum.
McCullum himself bowled five overs for only six runs in the last session where Pakistan scored 75 after fast bowlers Tim Southee and Trent Boult couldn't make any impact. The two spinners Ish Sodhi and Craig also proved ineffective after sharing 40 overs between them.
Shehzad raised his third test century of 2014 in the United Arab Emirates off 221 balls by pushing James Neesham to midwicket for a single, hitting 12 fours.
Shehzad had hit hundreds in the drawn series against Sri Lanka earlier this year and also against Australia in the first test last month.
Earlier, Hafeez fulfilled Misbah's faith in him despite scoring only 48 runs in his three unimpressive innings against Australia.
Hafeez, who scored his last test century against Sri Lanka in June 2012, grew in confidence and raised his half century off 81 balls by pulling Southee to midwicket for his fourth boundary in the second session.
Shehzad was more subdued and played out cautiously as he reached his fifty off 148 balls with five fours by guiding legspinner Sodhi for two runs to square leg.
However, Shehzad then increased the scoring rate and didn't hesitate to punish loose deliveries, hitting a further six boundaries as Pakistan made 109 in the second session.
McCullum gave lengthy spells to both his spinners, Sodhi and Craig, but it was Anderson's gentle medium fast bowling that brought the only success.
Earlier, Craig should have got the breakthrough in the first session but Watling missed Shehzad's stumping with Pakistan on 44 before reaching 85-0 at lunch.
Pakistan kept faith in the same team that thrashed Michael Clarke's men by 356 runs in the second test for its first series victory against Australia in 20 years.
New Zealand included both Sodhi and Craig with the Sheikh Zayed Stadium wicket having a history of assisting slow bowlers as the match progresses.
Pakistan has not lost a test series to New Zealand since the Black Caps won 2-0 in 1985.