Hurting Australia look to stall Pakistan's ascendancy

Australia's Tim Paine
©Reuters/Craig Brough
 

While Pakistan would like to maintain their winning streak, Australia would be desperate to get back on track and taste victory after a long time.

Pakistan are currently the number one ranked T20I side. After defeating Scotland 2-0 in the two match T20I series, they had a great start to the Zimbabwe tri-series, beating the hosts all ends up.

Although the result was more or less expected, Pakistan have done themselves no harm by bagging a comprehensive 74-run victory. This match would have also helped them to get used to the conditions of Zimbabwe and the pitch at Harare sports club.


In the match against Zimbabawe, Fakhar Zaman, Shoaib Malik and Asif Ali starred with the bat while Mohammad Nawaz, Usman Khan and Hasan Ali were the standout bowlers.

Australia, on the other hand, are coming off a losing streak. They did not only lose the ODI series 5-0 against England but also failed to win the one-off T20I.

After Tim Paine's abysmal captaincy stint, it is now time for Aaron Finch to take over. This series can also work as a litmus test for Cricket Australia's future plans of designating Aaron Finch the captaincy of the ODIs leading up to the 2019 World Cup.

The Aussie batting depends a lot on Aaron Finch and Travis Head. Finch would love to lead from the front and start the tour on a positive note. Australia also have a few quality bowlers in Billy
Stanlake, Andrew Tye and Kane Richardson. The young spinner Swepson was also impressive in the T20I against England.

All in all, it is going to be a great contest. While Pakistan would like to maintain their winning streak, Australia would be desperate to get back on track and taste victory after a long time.

Pakistan squad

Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Hussain Talat, Sarfraz Ahmed(w/c), Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Usman Khan, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Amir, Shaheen Afridi, Sahibzada Farhan

Australia squad

D Arcy Short, Aaron Finch(c), Glenn Maxwell, Travis Head, Alex Carey(w), Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Agar, Andrew Tye, Kane Richardson, Mitchell Swepson, Billy Stanlake, Nic Maddinson, Jhye Richardson, Jack Wildermuth

© Cricket World