England vs Pakistan, Only T20I Preview: A stern test for the hosts before the “Great War”
Both the teams right now have nothing in mind but the World Cup
Updated - May 4, 2019 11:27 pm
England survived a humiliating defeat at the hands of their Irish opponents just two nights ago and now, they will be up against a much formidable team in Pakistan. The Asian side landed in the UK almost a week ago to kick-start their World Cup preparations and now will be playing a T20I against the hosts, followed by five-match ODI series.
Both teams right now have nothing in mind but the World Cup, which begins at the end of this month. This series, no matter what the result is going to be, will provide good exposure to the visiting side and will help them acclimatize to the conditions before the World Cup warm matches begin.
Pakistan won all their warm-up games leading up to this series comfortably and coach Mickey Arthur reckoned it was a perfect beginning to what will be a long stay in the great Britain lands. Although England will not be sending their A squad for this T20 encounter, they still are a force to reckon with on home turf.
Dawid Malan looked good in the little time he spent in the middle the other day, but he misses out due to an injury to his left groin. Phil Salt was called in as a replacement, but Ben Duckett will open alongside James Vince. The XI will be the same as the one which took on Ireland apart from that one change. Jofra Archer will be keen to have his say in the format he loves the most. Tom Curran, David Willey and Chris Jordan are the other bowling options for skipper Morgan.
Ben Duckett, James Vince, Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (C), Joe Denly, Ben Foakes (wk), David Willey, Tom Curran, Jofra Archer, Adil Rashid, Chris Jordan.
Mohammed Amir will be getting a chance to prove the selectors wrong after he was left out of the provisional World Cup squad. Shadab Khan will not be available due to a virus. Babar Azam, the world number one batsman in T20Is, will be in action and will be a crucial member in the middle order alongside skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed and the experienced Shoaib Malik. Yasir Shah and Imad Wasim will be the spinning options for the side.
Imam-ul-Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Shoaib Malik, Sarfaraz Ahmed (C/wk), Imad Wasim, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammed Amir, Yasir Shah, Junaid Khan
Focus will be on
Ben Foakes (England)
Ben Foakes registered a hundred on Test debut and a match-winning fifty on ODI debut. All eyes will be on him as he will be making his T20I debut and the English fans will be hoping for the 25-year-old to carry on the incredible streak. The Essex man showed great composure in a critical situation on Friday and will be keen to put another show.
Mohammed Amir (Pakistan)
A string of disappointing performances ensured the selectors showed the cold shoulder to Mohammed Amir in the World Cup squad selection, but Amir will keep fighting hard to prove the selectors wrong and maybe earn a surprise inclusion. Although that looks unlikely, the speedster will relish bowling in English conditions and will pose a major threat to the host’s batters.
Head to Head
Matches played – 13 | England won – 9 | Pakistan won – 4
18 – Pakistan won 18 of their last 21 T20I matches.