Pakistan and New Zealand seek revival after England battering

Pakistan and New Zealand will hope for a reversal of fortune in the two-match Test series starting in Karachi from Monday after both were whitewashed 3-0 by England in their last series.

New Zealand were scuppered in England in May as the home team under head coach Brendon McCullum and skipper Ben Stokes introduced the aggressive “Bazball” style of cricket that is revolutionising the sport.

The never-say-die style also saw England inflict a first-ever 3-0 series defeat on Pakistan this month.

Since then, the Pakistan Cricket Board has undergone a revamp, with Ramiz Raja removed as chairman and chief selector Mohammad Wasim sacked.

Skipper Babar Azam is also under scrutiny after losing an unprecedented four home Tests on the trot.

Azam vowed his team would seek a quick turnaround.

“There have been difficult times in the last series,” said Azam, who has had to lead a side hard-hit by injuries.

“With new players, it’s different because when the opposition attacks them, it places a sharper kind of pressure on them,” he said. “It takes time to get used to that.”

Spearheads Shaheen Shah Afridi and Haris Rauf will miss both the New Zealand games, having still not recovered from injuries, but Naseem Shah is available after missing the last two Tests.

Kamran Ghulam, who has accumulated runs in domestic matches, replaces the retiring Azhar Ali.

Since winning the inaugural World Test Championship final against India last year, New Zealand have won just two of nine matches, but will be skippered by fast bowler Tim Southee.

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