After stunning India 3-2, Australia have now sealed the five-match ODI series against Pakistan, leading 3-0 after the first three matches.
Australia and Pakistan will take on each other in 4th ODI at Dubai International Stadium. Australia will be carrying a lot of momentum into the match, having won first three ODI’s.
Australia are on a rampage in the ODIs at the moment. After struggling for a long time in the format, they have won six matches on the trot. As far as this series is concerned, they are leading the five-match series by 3-0.
So it is now six out of six for Australia. Winning the last six matches for a team which was struggling to even stitch together a solitary victory is certainly an achievement.
Batting first in the 3rd ODI, Australia were faced with a lot of swing and seam at Abu Dhabi. Usman Khawaja had his polls knocked down off Usman Shinwari. Shaun Marsh also departed soon.
It was then the partnership between Aaron Finch and Peter Handscomb that provided some solidity to the Australian batting but still the team was going at quite a slow pace. It was Glenn Maxwell’s 55-ball 71 which did the trick for Australia as they succeeded in putting a 266-run total on the board, above par on a difficult batting pitch.
All Pakistani bowlers bowled economically and did not give too much to the batters, at least in the first 40 overs. Young pacer Mohammed Hasnain was quite expensive and did not pick up a wicket, which is why he was only made to bowl five overs.
In reply, apart from opener Imam-ul-Haq, there was not much at the top of the batting order. Shoaib Malik and Imad Wasim tried to stick around but they were too slow and as a result kept digging themselves into a hole, out of which the team could never come out.
The sculptors of the Australian victory were Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa who shared seven wickets between them.
Date: Friday March 29, 2019
Timing: 04:00 PM PKT
Weather: A cloudy day is predicted in Dubai but rain is unlikely to play any part.
Conditions / Pitch Report: Dubai hosts the final leg of the series, with its surface expected to be straw-coloured and slow. The pitch could quicken up during the second innings due to increased humidity levels. Dew could also play a role.
Head to Head:
Matches: 101 | Australia: 65 | Pakistan: 32 | NR: 4
Australia: W W W W W (completed matches, most recent first)
Pakistan: L L L L W
Australia is likely to field the same playing XI. 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 on Abu Dhabi track. Kane Richardson will be hopeful of some game time now that the series is decided.
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. NM Coulter-Nile / Kane Richardson
Pakistan are taking the opportunity to try youngsters 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.
We might see at least one of Abid Ali and Saad Ali making their debuts in the 4th ODI. One of them might replace Imam-ul-Haq or Shan Masood.
Mohammad Amir is likely to make a come back in place of Mohammad Hasnain who is yet to make a big impact in ODI’s.
Pakistan’s Probable XI:
1. Imam-ul-Haq / Saad Ali, 2. Shan Masood / Abid Ali, 3. Haris Sohail, 4. Umar Akmal, 5. Shoaib Malik (capt), 6. Mohammad Rizwan (wk), 7. Imad Wasim 8. Mohammad Amir / Mohammad Hasnain, 9. Yasir Shah, 10. Junaid Khan 11. Usman Shinwari,
Stats and Travia:
- Australia have clean swept a five-match ODI series four times previously – in New Zealand in 2005, in the West Indies in 2008, against Pakistan in 2010 and against West Indies in 2012.
- Shoaib Malik (669) needs three runs to surpass Mark Waugh (671) on the list of run-makers during ODIs between these two sides.
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. Aaron Finch – Batsman, Australia
Australia’s captain Aaron Finch is a man on a mission. Arguably the most in-form player in this Australian team, Aaron Finch comes to the form after a very bad season. He notched up his career best 155* in the last ODI against at Sharjah.
4. Usman Khawaja – Batsman, Australia
The player of the series against India, Usman Khawaja 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.