Date & Time: Monday, June 03, 15:00 IST
Venue: Trent Bridge, Nottingham, England
All eyes on Pakistan batting
The high flying England will be hosting the Pakistan team, which has just taken a pounding from the mighty West Indies. Pakistan has a chance to redeem themselves after a poor showing with the bat in their last game, with the venue (Trent Bridge, Nottingham) being the same for this game as well. England will be the confident side going into this match after having beaten the same Pakistan team just a few days back to win the ODI series 4-0.
England may not want to alter their winning combination. However, they can bring in Mark Wood’s pacey bouncers after West Indies exploited Pakistani batsmen’s shortcomings to the short ball. Liam Plunkett may make way for Mark Wood. Pakistan might look to bring in either the experienced Shoaib Malik or the aggressive Asif Ali instead of Mohammad Hafeez. Shaheen Afridi might be drafted in for Imad Wasim or Hasan Ali.
There has been too much talk about the same pitch, in which England posted a record 481, being the venue for this match. So we can expect a high scoring contest and hopefully Pakistan won’t disappoint with the bat second time in a row.
Jonny Bairstow has been in phenomenal form of late scoring tons of runs for England as well as in IPL 2019. He was the only top order batsman who missed out in the last game and will be very eager to perform today. He was initially getting out to leg spinners in IPL also, but then he managed to tackle them in IPL and with English conditions not assisting spin a huge deal as of now, he should be able to tackle Shadab Khan.
If there’s someone who you would bet on to revive the sinking Pakistani batting line up, it has got to be Babar Azam. He has been in great form of late but if he can’t stand up on big occasions like this, he will come under scrutiny irrespective of his recent batting form. In the last 3 years of ODI cricket, he has been one of the top 5 run scorers and has an impressive batting average of around 52.
Jofra Archer has been rightly predicted by many as the X Factor in England’s bowling attack and he did everything to prove them right in the last match. All his 3 wicket taking deliveries were back of a length or short deliveries and seeing how Pakistan struggled against the short pitched bowling against West Indies, he might be tempted to bowl a fair bit of bouncers today. Both the Pakistani openers have struggled to negotiate short pitched bowling for the last 6 months or so. Hence, don’t be surprised if they both get out to short balls again today.
Wahab Riaz was one of the most controversial picks in this edition of the World Cup. His bowling figures of 10-0-110-0 is the second most runs of runs conceded in ODI cricket history and it was achieved in this very venue Trent Bridge, Nottingham in 2016. He backed it up with another expensive outing in this venue where he conceded 40 runs in just 3.4 overs a couple of days ago against West Indies. If we witness another high scoring encounter tomorrow, then expect him to go for aplenty. However, he can play a part if the pitch assists reverse swing late in the innings.