South Africa vs Pakistan, 3rd T20I, Preview: Visitors hope to end the tough tour on a winning note
There is still doubts over Hafeez's availability.
Published - Feb 5, 2019 6:58 pm | Updated - Feb 5, 2019 6:58 pm
Pakistan’s winning streak in the shortest format has been broken on this South African tour. They will be feeling hard done though having gone down in the last-over thrillers in both the matches of the series. But the inexperienced South African bowling unit has fared better in pressure situations and thoroughly deserve the 2-0 lead at the moment. But with the series in the bag, there should be no let-off in the intensity from them and will be looking for a whitewash.
Also, this series loss doesn’t brush away the fact that Pakistan are still the World number 1 side in the T20Is and they would want to prove it again in this dead rubber and end a tough tour on a high. The visitors have been on the receiving end in all the formats on this tour despite playing more than decent cricket in the limited-over formats. The Men in Green would be eyeing a perfect game before leaving the rainbow nation.
David Miller endured the toughest of times as the captain on the field but was a brute force with the bat in the previous game. His blistering knock propelled South Africa to the winning total and the confidence should come in his captaincy also now. The likes of Janneman Malan and Lutho Sipamla also fared decently on debut and should be retained for this game.
South Africa don’t have much room to make the changes to their line-up and they might not make any changes to their team for the dead rubber. They might think of resting Andile Phehlukwayo who has played each of the seven matches of the limited-overs series on this tour. Willem Mulder might get a chance who featured only in the fifth ODI. He will be a like-for-like replacement while the rest of the team should be same.
Probable XI: Janneman Malan, Reeza Hendricks, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller (c), Heinrich Klaasen (wk), Willem Mulder, Chris Morris, Lutho Sipamla, Beuran Hendricks, Junior Dala, Tabraiz Shamsi.
Pakistan have missed Mohammad Hafeez’s experience in this series so far and there is still no clarity on his availability. But Asif Ali’s poor form with the bat should lead to Sahibzada Farhan getting a chance if Hafeez isn’t fit. Also, Mohammad Amir and Faheem Ashraf could get a look-in after the way Usman Khan and Hasan Ali bowled at the Wanderers.
Probable XI: Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Hussain Talat, Sahibzada Farhan/Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Amir/Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi.
Focus will be on
Janneman Malan (South Africa)
South Africa have been handing a debut to a lot of players in the T20Is and Janneman is one of those. But he struggled a bit in his first game but will have to do something significant to stay in the contention for the national side as the prime focus is on the 50-over World Cup at the moment. A brilliant knock in this game could seal his place for a long time with the T20 World Cup scheduled next year.
Babar Azam (Pakistan)
Babar Azam’s batting was a pure class at the Wanderers. He proved once again that slogging is not the last option in the T20Is. The talented batsman put an exhibition of some exquisite strokes during his 90-run knock and will be again key if Pakistan are to avoid a whitewash. Moreover, he should also concentrate on playing until the end after spending a fair amount of time on the crease.
Head to Head
Matches – 13 | South Africa won – 8 | Pakistan won – 5 | Tied/NR – 0
5- Shoaib Malik has lost five out of his last six T20Is as captain.
TV – Sony ESPN and Sony ESPN HD
Live Streaming – Sony LIV
Match Timings – 21:30 IST; 18:00 local