Opting to bat after winning the toss, New Zealand got off to a poor but eventful start.
Finn Allen hit a boundary off the first ball and survived a close leg-before-wicket shout off the second via review. He was then immediately out lbw off the next delivery.
New Zealand captain Kane Williamson and Devon Conway (21) put on 34 runs for the second wicket before the latter was run out at the end of a powerplay.
The Black Caps were then reduced to 49-3 in eight overs as Mohammad Nawaz sent back Glenn Phillips (6).
Williamson scored 46 off 42 balls, including a four and a six, and anchored the New Zealand innings. He put on 68 runs off 50 balls with Daryl Mitchell for the fourth wicket.
Afridi returned to dismiss Williamson in the 17th overs. Mitchell hit three fours and a six in completing his half-century off 32 balls.
Pakistan’s excellent ground fielding and the wicket’s slow nature then denied New Zealand the chance to launch any type of attack in the final overs.
In reply, Azam and Rizwan belied their poor form to put on a century stand for the first wicket.
They scored 50 off 34 balls and reached 100 off 70 deliveries. In all, they put on 105 runs off 76 balls to set Pakistan on course for an easy win.
Azam was out shortly after reaching his half-century off 38 balls. Meanwhile, Rizwan scored 50 off 36 balls before being dismissed in the 17th over.
By then only 21 runs were needed off 18 balls and Pakiston closed it out with five balls to spare, as Mohammad Haris finished with 30 from 26 balls.
Powerplay performance was the difference between the two sides. While New Zealand was restricted to 38-2 in its first six overs, Pakistan scored 55-0 in the powerplay.
“We were put under pressure early. Pakistan bowled very well,” Williamson said. “ We were able to wrestle back momentum with an unbelievable knock from Mitchell. We felt it was a competitive total. Babar and Rizwan were outstanding and we were outplayed.”