Match Preview

Whitewash on cards as Pakistan sees series sweep

Photo by AAMIR QURESHI/AFP via Getty Images

The series is sealed. The final ODI is now a dead rubber, right? Not exactly. Zimbabwe may have lost the series, but they haven’t given up on winning the match. Let’s not forget that the ODI World Cup Super League is ongoing currently and those 10 points are still there for grabs. 

Pakistan are second place in the points table of ODI Super League with 20 points, behind England who are with 30 points. As we know, the top eight teams will automatically qualify for the 2023 ICC Cricket World Cup. Zimbabwe missed out on the qualifications for the 2019 World Cup but now they will be looking to grab those points to kick-off their campaign. 

It’s not exactly a dead rubber. All those points will matter. And that is why the third ODI is as important as other matches.

Match Details:

Date: November 03, 2020

Timing: 12:00 PM PKT

Venue: Rawalpindi, Pakistan 

Weather: It will be another bright and sunny day without any threat.

Conditions / Pitch Report: Again, we will see a little different strip which will likely be a batsmen’s paradise.

Head to Head:

Matches: 61 | Pakistan: 54 | Zimbabwe: 4 | Tied: | No Result: 2

Form Guide:

Pakistan: W W W W W (completed matches, most recent first)

Zimbabwe: L L L L L 

Team News:

1. Pakistan

Three changes were made for the final ODI. This team, Abdullah Shafique, Zafar Gohar and Mohammad Hasnain were included, replacing Imad Wasim, Abid Ali and Haris Rauf.

Khushdil Shah is expected to make his ODI debut tomorrow. More likely in the place of Imad Wasim. Shaheen may be given a rest, which means Wahab Riaz will be back for the side. As for Haris Rauf, Mohammad Hasnain will likely to take his place.

There is a curious case of Usman Qadir. He has been with the team for over an year and is yet to make his Pakistan debut. If Faheem Ashraf gets rest for tomorrow, it will be either Usman or bowling all-rounder Zafar Gohar to replace him.

Pakistan’s Probable XI:

1. Imam-ul-Haq, 2. Fakhar Zaman, 3. Babar Azam (c), 4. Haider Ali, 5. Mohammad Rizwan (wk), 6. Khushdil Shah, 7. Iftikhar Ahmed, 8. Faheem Ashraf/ Usman Qadir/ Zafar Gohar, 9. Wahab Riaz, 10. Mohammad Hasnain, 11. Musa Khan

2. Zimbabwe

They had the chance in the first ODI, only to be stopped by the experience bowlers of Pakistan. They tried to put on a competitive total in the second ODI, but the part-timer prompt collapsed. With the series now gone, Zimbabwe will still be fighting for a win to gain those 10 points.

In the second ODI, their batsmen tried to see off the new ball, only to loose their two wickets with 27 on board at ninth over. At fifteenth over, they were struggling at 59-3. Experienced batsmen Brendan Taylor and Sean Williams carried their team. And they were looking much comfortable. Sean Williams early attack meant they raise their run-rate and put pressure back on Pakistan. However, they all crumbled to part-time spin of Iftikhar Ahmed, loosing 7 wickets for 86 runs by playing some rash shots. Their bowlers were also off, bowling loose deliveries more rather bowling tight lines. They need to rectify these quickly in order to mark their first win in ODI Super League.

Zimbabwe were unchanged in the second game but now they may make a couple. Especially in the batting department where they feel they are short. Tinashe Kamunhukamwe will likely to come in for Brain Chari while Tendai Chitara may finally given a game in place of Carl Mumba.

Zimbabwe’s Probable XI:

1. Tinashe Kamunhukamwe, 2. Chamu Chibhabha (c), 3. Craig Ervine, 4. Brendan Taylor (wk), 5. Sean Williams, 6. Wesley Madhevere7. Sikandar Raza, 8. Tendai Chisoro, 9. Carl Mumba/ Tendai Chatara, 10. Blessing Muzarabani, 11. Richard Ngavara

Players to watch:

1. Haider Ali – Batsman, Pakistan

Haider Ali promised with his talent earlier in his under19 days. Now with two international matches old, he has already impressed a lot of people with his skills and his style of batting. He averages in 40s in List A career and showed responsibilities. He was dismissed by that freakish LBW dismissals that led to some debate, but it won’t stop him being the talk of the cricket world if he carry on his form like this in the third ODI. 

2. Brendon Taylor – Batsman, Zimbabwe

Brendon Taylor is the highest run-scorer this series. His return helped Zimbabwe to have a strong start in batting. A century in the first game and a mid 30s in the second ODI showed his importance in the side. With the series gone but points still up to take, he will need to play an innings that ensure Zimbabwe’s win. He is 98 runs away from overtaking Grant Flower as the second-highest Zimbabwe ODI run-scorer. He is currently 312 runs behind the leader, Andy Flower. 

3. Shaheen Afridi – Bowler, Pakistan

20 ODIs, 40 wickets at an average of 21.17. That is how great Shaheen been. Last year, he was Pakistan’s second highest wicket-taker in the 2019 with 16 and was rested for the Sri Lanka series afterwards. He has been in a terrific form recently as he picked 20 wickets in the National T20 Cup, leading the bowlings chart. If there is one fast bowler Zimbabwe they need to be vary of, it’s Shaheen and his threat.

4. Sean Williams – All-Rounder, Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe needed needed his experience and he showed why. Zimbabwe’s run-rate in the second game was about 3.5 when batting. When he arrived, he quickly adopted the conditions and pushed their run-rate up to five till the 25th over. He needs to play another good innings, this time making sure that they win the match.

Stats and Travia:

  • Tendai Chatara is five scalps away from 100 ODI wickets and stands to be the sixth Zimbabwe bowler to achieve this feat.
  • Brendon Taylor is 98 runs away from overtaking Grant Flower as the second-highest Zimbabwe ODI run-scorer.
  • One more win here for Pakistan will mean that Pakistan will have nine straight wins and will become their third best streak.
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