Australia and Pakistan will take on each other in 2nd ODI at Sharjah International Stadium. Australia will be carrying a lot of momentum into the match, having won first ODI.
It was expected that Australia might perform better than Pakistan in the first ODI but it was hardly anticipated that they will do it so clinically and win the match by 8 wickets.
Bereft of many of its key players, Pakistan batted first with Shan Masood coming out to open the innings along with regular opener Imam-ul-Haq. It was the partnership between Masood and Haris Sohail (101), who batted at one drop, that set the stage for Pakistan. Umar Akmal scored an almost run-a-ball 48.
20s from Faheem Ashraf and Imad Wasim meant that Pakistan posted a par score of 280 on the board. Although not with a lot of wickets, it was the spinning trio of Australia in Nathan Lyon, Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell that dried Pakistan’s run scoring.
Jhye Richardson and Nathan Coulter-Nile were also among wickets.
In reply, it was as clinical as it could get from Australia. Usman Khawaja batted patiently for his 30-ball 24 but it was the partnership between centurion Aaron Finch and Shaun Marsh (91) which did the trick for Australia.
Later on, Handscomb played a very sensible innings to see the team to a victory on the last ball of the penultimate over.
Date: Sunday March 24, 2019
Timing: 04:00 PM PKT
Venue: Sharjah Cricket Stadium
Weather: A cloudy day is predicted in Sharjah with the humidity levels high during the afternoon.
Conditions / Pitch Report: The Sharjah track isn’t a very high scoring track. After watching the first ODI, chasing at this venue could be ideal. Conditions are expected to be humid and sunny, with no rain expected
Head to Head:
Matches: 99 | Australia: 63 | Pakistan: 32 | NR: 4
Australia: W W W W L (completed matches, most recent first)
Pakistan: L L W L L
Aaron Finch registered his 12th ODI century in the match. With the help of Shaun Marsh’s unbeaten 91, the visitors chased down a steep target of 281 with one over to spare.
Pat Cummins was rested for the opening match, but he could come back into consideration. Khawaja and Finch will go up front with Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Peter Handscomb and Alex Carey coming in the middle order.
The duo of Nathan Lyon and Adam Zampa did extremely well in choking the flow of runs. Jhye Richardson and Stoinis will be Finch’s fast bowling alternatives.
Australia’s Probable XI:
1. Aaron Finch (capt), 2. Usman Khawaja,, 3. Peter Handscomb, 4. Marcus Stoinis, 5. Shaun Marsh, 6. Ashton Turner, 7. Alex Carey (wk), 8. Nathan Lyon, 9. Pat Cummins, 10. Adam Zampa, 11. Jhye Richardson
Pakistan are taking the opportunity to try Abid Ali, Mohammad Hasnain and Saad Ali ahead of the World Cup. Pakistan have rested a lot of their key players. Veteran batsman Shoaib Malik is leading the side in the absence of regular skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed.
Umar Akmal has been given chance on the basis of his PSL performance. Faheem Ashraf and Imad Wasim would be two important players for the side as their all-round abilities would serve the team in both the departments.
Mohammad Hasnain might be given a chance and Usman Shinwari is likely to replace Mohammad Amir.
Pakistan’s Probable XI:
1. Imam-ul-Haq, 2. Shan Masood, 3. Haris Sohail, 4. Umar Akmal, 5. Shoaib Malik (capt), 6. Mohammad Rizwan (wk), 7. Faheem Ashraf 8. Imad Wasim, 9. Yasir Shah, 10. Mohammad Amir / Usman Shinwari, 11. Mohammad Hasnain
Players to watch:
1. Shoaib Malik – Batsman, Pakistan
Skipper of the Pakistan can have a good start to the series if he takes off in a batsman friendly pitch in Sharjah on Friday. Malik is a smart player and plays well to the situation. He has been very consistent with the runs for Pakistan in the last year and could be one of the most important players in the series.
2. Umar Akmal – Batsman, Pakistan
Pakistan needs Umar Akmal to be at the very top of his game. And if he manages that, Pakistan are definitely on their way to a victory. In fine-form, Umar Akmal has had no rust coming at the back of a successful season at the PSL. Umar Akmal’s form is imperative to Pakistan’s success, and the batsman could very well turn the match on its head. Umar Akmal could have a good evening on Friday.
3. Marcus Stoinis – All-rounder, Australia
Arguably the most in-form player in this Australian team, Marcus Stoinis comes to this side after a very successful BBL campaign with Melbourne Stars. He had a good series against India as well in and will be eager to extend that form in this series as well.
4. Usman Khawaja – Batsman, Australia
The player of the series against India, Usman Khawajja showed why he is one of the best at handling pressure situations. Khawaja struck 383 runs, including two centuries, in Australia’s 3-2 series win over India earlier this month. Khawaja is capable of a huge knock that could have a big impact in the game and is Australia’s trump card.
Stats and Travia:
- Australia haven’t won five ODIs in succession since they were victorious in nine in a row in 2015, including their World Cup winning run that year.
- Pakistan haven’t beaten Australia in an ODI in Sharjah since the final of the Austral-Asia Cup in Sharjah in May 1990.