Pakistan pummelled New Zealand by 10 wickets in the firsttest at Hamilton, bowling out the home team for 110 in justover three hours in its second innings. The New Zealand teamhas been harshly criticized in the media and flayed in publicforums since that loss which it''s own captain, Daniel Vettori,called embarrassing.
Meanwhile, Pakistan is focused on achieving a 2-0 win inthe two-test series to usher in what coach Waqar Younis sayscould be a bright new era for the troubled cricket nation.
"It''s a new year and it''s a new set up. I woulddefinitely like to say the team is a lot hungrier than whatI''ve seen in the past," Waqar said.
"It''s a good unit so hopefully this year will bring usgood results."
Waqar adds a cautious note, that Pakistan has foreseenbright new eras in the past and circumstances have conspiredto frustrate their optimism.
"That''s what we were thinking six months ago and thensuddenly something comes up," he said in an oblique referenceto the match-fixing scandal currently affecting Pakistancricket.
Vettori and New Zealand coach John Wright both said theperformance in Hamilton was unacceptable. New Zealand madeonly 275 in its first innings in ideal batting conditions,conceded a 92-run lead on the first innings then collapsed inits second innings, losing all 10 wickets in a session.
Both captain and coach have demanded a better performanceand expressed sympathy with fans who - having endured NewZealand''s 11-match losing streak in one-day internationals -have now had to suffer the team''s failure at test level.
"Wrighty and myself have spoken to the team and therehave been a lot of harsh words," Vettori said.
"Wrighty has stated emphatically that things have tochange, you can''t keep putting those performances together. Hewants to be part of the change and I do too, so it''s got tostart at the base." (MORE) AP SNK
A succession of New Zealand players have been paraded before the media this week, repeating the same buzzwords: thatplayers have to take "ownership" of their own personalperformances and that the team must get back to basics.
Batsman Ross Taylor made scores of 6 and 8 in Hamilton,at the same time being picked up in the Indian Premier Leagueauction for USD 1 million, the highest price for a NewZealander.
Taylor has averaged only 21 in his past seven tests andis part of a top six which has repeatedly failed to give NewZealand batting solidity.
"The way I''m playing at the moment isn''t good enough butas I said, I don''t feel as though I''m out of nick, I justhaven''t been able to score the runs," Taylor said.
Wright said the batsmen had been clearly told thatcontinued failure was not acceptable.
"They all understood it," he said. "It''s jut occupyingthe crease and not giving your wicket away. It''s not rocketscience.
"We have to get our house in order and concentrate onwhat we do. They''re a dangerous side but we''ve got to lookmore inwards than outwards."
New Zealand (from): Daniel Vettori (captain), BrendonMcCullum, Tim McIntosh, Martin Guptill, Ross Taylor, JesseRyder, Kane Williamson, James Franklin, Reece Young, DanielVettori, Tim Southee, Daryl Tuffey, Brent Arnel, Chris Martin.
Pakistan (from): Misbah ul-Haq (captain), MohammadHafeez, Taufeeq Umar, Younis Khan, Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq,Adnan Akmal, Abdur Rehman, Umar Gul, Wahab Riaz, Tanvir Ahmed,Khurram Mansor, Sohail Tanvir, Umar Akmal. (AP) SNK