Martin Guptill scored a century as Pakistan limited New Zealand to a modest 271 for seven in the fifth one-day international in Wellington on Friday.
Guptill and Colin Munro gave the hosts a flying start before Rumman Raees helped spark a mini-collapse that put the brakes on New Zealand’s scoring.
Rumman’s three for 67 kept the New Zealand total within reach for Pakistan as they seek to avoid a 5-0 series whitewash.
Munro racked up 34 from 24 balls to get the Black Caps out of the blocks before edging to Mohammad Nawaz.
While Munro’s departure slowed the run rate, Guptill was content to steadily accumulate.
He had a life on 72 when he slipped over mid-wicket and Faheem Ashraf missed the stumps as the batsman scrambled back to the crease on his hands and knees.
It gave his innings greater urgency and he brought up his 13th ODI century off 125 balls, including 10 fours and a six.
After a frustrating morning, Pakistan’s attack enjoyed some late success when they took four wickets for 12 runs.
Guptill was dismissed soon after he reached triple figures and Faheem clean-bowled Ross Taylor to end a threatening knock on 59.
Colin de Grandhomme offered some resistance with an unbeaten 29 off 21 balls but Pakistan will back their chances of reaching the target of 272 in the small boundaries at the Basin Reserve.