Pakistan slumped to their second successive defeat in the Sultan Azlan Shah hockey tournament, while hosts Malaysia registered back-to-back victories in the five-nation event, in Ipoh, Malaysia, on Monday.
Pakistan's chances of qualifying for the April 12 final suffered a severe jolt after a 2-3 defeat to title-favourites New Zealand in a round-robin match.
Malaysia, on the other hand, came a step closer towards the title clash after thrashing Egypt 4-1 in the second match of the day.
The encounter between New Zealand and Pakistan was close, the
Black Sticks sealing the victory just two minutes from the hooter.
The Black Sticks, who came into the event with a young squad, scored through Priyesh Bana (seventh minute), Nicholas Haig (44th), and Dean Couzins (68th), while Dilawar Hussain (eighth) and Mohamed Imran (23) found the net for Pakistan.
Meanwhile, the other match between Malaysia and newcomers Egypt was a one-sided affair with the hosts sounding the board thrice in the second half to register their second successive win in the invitational tournament.
Ismail Abu (27th minute), Engku Abdul Malek (39th), Chua Boon Huat (64th, 68th) found the net for the hosts, while Ahmed Abd El Hakiem (45th) was the lone goal scorer for Egypt.
Pakistan had a disastrous start to the tournament on Sunday, as Malaysia, ranked 15th in the world, beat them by an identical scoreline.
Egypt had stunned India, holding them to a 2-2 draw in the tournament opener on Sunday.
After a rest day on Tuesday, India take on Malaysia on Wednesday, hoping to put an end to their winning streak, while New Zealand will be up against a less-formidable Egypt in the other match of the day.