Date & Time: Monday, October 07, 19:00 IST
Venue: Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore, Pakistan
Pakistan seeks to bounce back
It was a surprise and really a big one with the way Pakistan collapsed against a moderate Lankan attack. It seemed like Pakistan hasn’t turned their mojo on after the ODI series. Although a lot of credit has to be given to Sri Lankans after a couple of fights in the ODIs, with the way they have come up with a complete performance. Now the question is, can they continue the same in the second T20I or is it just a one-off performance? On the other hand, the pressure is high on Pakistan to bounce back.
Sarfaraz backed both Shehzad and Akmal for the second T20I as well which could mean Zaman might likely stick out even in a must-win game. Sri Lanka is likely to stick with the winning combination.
The surface in Lahore was true to its nature. A batting-friendly surface produced in the first T20I slowed down a bit in the second innings but wasn’t that difficult to bat on as Pakistan made it be. So expect another similar surface for Monday’s contest as well.
The premier batsman in the format has had a rare failure in the first game but he is not expected to repeat the same for the second time. He has a PPM of 56 and an MDTA of 1.35 in T20Is.
He is making the most use of his comeback in absence of experienced players after a poor series against New Zealand. He has come up with the top-notch knocks on the tour which make him a worthy pick in today’s match.
He is proving to be a reliable option for Lankans with the ball. Pakistan batsmen struggled to negate his slower balls which yielded him 3 wickets in the first T20I. Adding to it, his ability to come up with handy cameos down the order makes him a worthy pick to consider.
He came up with what he does best in the first game. He was also pretty effective in the ODIs. He has picked 8 wickets in the last few matches where he also came up with few handy runs down the order.
Pakistan spearhead may not have had the best outing in the first game where he went wicket-less. But he was the most economical bowler of the side. His ability to trouble batsmen upfront with the swing and perfect Yorkers at the end makes him must-have.