Williamson & co. continue batting parade as New Zealand gain marginal lead
Kane Williamson scored his first international century after 722 days
On a day where New Zealand's former captain and deputy scored a Test century each, the Blackcaps have gotten a considerate advantage over Pakistan.
From Pakistan's point of view, the day was full of comedy as they first tried to bring in Mohammad Rizwan as a stand-in captain in place of an unwell Babar Azam. However, after an interception by the umpires; they had to give the captain's hat to the former Pakistan skipper - Sarfaraz Ahmed, before Babar returned in the second session.
Sarfaraz might have been sharp in bowling changes and field placements, but the experienced keeper missed on two stumping chances - which helped the Kiwis in the long run.
The sharp leadership skills helped the home team break partnerships at regular intervals. The first breakthrough of the day came in the form of Devon Conway, who was found in front of the stumps 8 runs shy of a deserving Test ton. However, Tom Latham - on the other hand, completed his 13th ton in the format to give the Blackcaps a platform to pile on runs later in the later.
Tom Blundell, Daryl Mitchell and Henry Nicholls played firm hands, and build partnerships with Kane Williamson. None of the above-mentioned batters could last long, but the former Kiwi skipper did last long and remained unbeaten till the end of the day.
Williamson not only scored his first century in 722 days and 25th overall in Test cricket, but his efforts gave New Zealand a lead of two runs and a tinker of hope to stretch it on the fourth day.
In the twilight of the day, the visitors might have lost a couple of quick wickets, however; they still are sitting on the boxing seat with four wickets still in hand.
Pakistan - 438/10 (130.5 overs)
Babar Azam - 161, Agha Salman - 103
Tim Southee - 3/69 (25.5), Michael Bracewell - 2/72 (24)
New Zealand - 440/6 (136 overs)
Tom Latham - 113, Kane Williamson - 105*
Abrar Ahmed - 3/143 (45), Nauman Ali - 2/137 (44)
New Zealand lead by 2 runs.