According to Sarfaraz Ahmed, the fifth-day century he scored against New Zealand on Friday in Karachi, nearly enabled Pakistan to complete an incredible chase.
At the post-game presentation, Sarfaraz noted that playing in the fourth innings always presents a challenging challenge. Bad lighting had enforced a stalemate with Pakistan wanting 15 more runs to hunt down 319 and New Zealand one wicket from winning the match.
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Not Easy To Score A 4th Innings Hundred Anywhere In The World: Sarfaraz Ahmed
“Definitely I have more hundreds, but this was a fourth-innings hundred and in the fourth innings, it is not easy to bat anywhere in the world. So I think this is my best hundred,” he said.
After Babar Azam’s dismissal, Pakistan was four down for 77 when Sarfaraz entered the batting order. After two over and three runs, Shan Masood also left the wicket.
Before he nicked one down-to-leg slip off Michael Bracewell, Sarfaraz continued to bat for over five hours and scored 118 to bring Pakistan close to victory.
Safaraz’s incredible comeback was completed with the century. He remained on the periphery of the Test setup for four years after losing his spot in the XI in January 2019, but he was unable to reclaim it. He now scored 86, 53, and 78 before recording his fourth Test century after being selected over of the out-of-sorts Mohammad Rizwan.
“I have been there with the team for four years and unfortunately I did not get a chance but whatever cricket came my way, my effort was to keep playing my game and keep giving performances and if Allah wants then I would get an opportunity and I did get an opportunity,” he said.
Result Could Have Been Better If Those Wickets Had Not Fallen: Sarfaraz Ahmed
Sarfaraz Ahmed claimed that although his teammates and captain Babar gave him encouragement, he was extremely anxious.
“My state of mind wasn’t very good when I came to bat the first time [in the series]. I was very tense, there was a lot of nerves,” he said. “But the captain gave me a lot of confidence and the boys in the team gave me a lot of confidence.
“I backed my form from domestic cricket and had a good performance.”
With Saud Shakeel, Sarfaraz played the aggressor as they put up a 123-run partnership. After Shakeel was out, he and Agha Salman put up a 70-run stand, but he said that after those two were dismissed, he had to play defense.
“The effort was that when there were 140 runs left, the message from the team management and the captain was that you go after the ball,” Sarfaraz said on the team’s tactics on the final day. “But when the two wickets fell, I had to go a little on the back foot. But if those wickets hadn’t fallen then, the result could have been a better one for us.”