Trent Bridge hosts match #2 of CWC19 between the West Indies (ICC ranked #8) and Pakistan (#6) this Friday. Twice winners of this competition (1975, 1979), the men in maroon caps come into the match having acclimatised to English conditions after a tri-nations series in Ireland and a 91-run win over New Zealand in their sole warm-up ODI, which saw an 86-ball century from Shai Hope (101).
They have now won three of their last six matches (L3), but have found it difficult to string together a winning sequence. They haven’t won an ODI series for nearly five years, having lost 12 of their last 15 (D3).
Their big hitting batting line-up in the white ball format can be devastating when on song and the delight of the paying public. With Chris Gayle (313x6s in 286 ODIs) and Andre Russel (54x6s in 52 matches at a SR:130.45) both coming into this tournament on the back of good IPL performances, England’s world record score of 481 at this very ground might be under threat if these two get going and Windies bat first.
Pakistan, winners in 1992, have lost their last six ODIs and in a bid to change their fortunes have brought in pacemen Mohammad Amir (60 wkts ER: 4.78) and Wahab Riaz (19 wkts ER: 5.38) to replace the ineffective pair of Junaid Khan and Faheem Ashraf. The Pakistani hierarchy will hope the pair change their bowling fortunes as the side haven’t been able to bowl a side out in 11 ODI matches.
They fare much better with the willow in hand. Babar Azam leads the way, ranked #7 in the world he has already amassed 2,739 ODI runs at an average of 51.67. Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik with 210 and 284 ODI matches under their belts, respectively, with be the mainstays in the middle order.
PAK vs WI Probable XI
Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Mohammed Hafeez, Asif Ali, Sarfraz Ahmed (c & wk), Shadab Khan, Hassan Ali, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir.
Chris Gayle, Evin Lewis, Shai Hope (wk), Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran, Andre Russell, Jason Holder (c), Kemar Roach, Shannon Gabriel, Sheldon Cottrell, Ashley Nurse.
PAK vs WI ODI – Players to watch out for
The ‘Universe Boss’ Chris Gayle can take the match away from any opposition with his destructive six hitting. Joint top of the all-time World Cup sixes chart with 37, Gayle will look to set a decent mark for others to chase in future World Cups.
Pakistani captain Sarfaraz Ahmed is an experienced campaigner and leader. He comes into the game on the back of his best ODI calendar year, averaging 58.50 with the bat – above his career average of 34.89.
Windies lead the H2H 70-60 (D3). Andre Russell has scored 998 ODI runs and needs just eight more for 1,000. Shoaib Malik has smashed 113 sixes in 284 ODIs.
Sarfaraz Ahmed has captained Pakistan in 40 ODIs but won the toss just 15 times (37.50%).