Australia vs Pakistan, Lahore. Even after a decent fightback from the batters, Pakistan couldn’t convert it to a win. It all went wrong with the failure of the middle order batting of Pakistan! Inexperienced and young players couldn’t face Adam Zampa. On the other hand, Travis Head, with the role of an opener, played an incredible inning. Aaron Finch’s form is concerning ahead of T20 World Cup, and he will be looking to play a fine inning in the second ODI.

Only Zimbabwe and Netherlands have won fewer ODI games than Pakistan in this cycle. If such poor form continues from Pakistan, there might be trouble for them to qualify for the 2023 World Cup! So, this ODI is a do-or-die match to retain their confidence.

Teams:

Ashton Agar tested positive and will not be available for selection.

Australia Playing 11: A Finch (C), T Head, B McDermott, M Labuschagne, M Stoinis, C Green, A Carey (WK), S Abbott, M Swepson, A Zampa, N Ellis

It will be no surprise if C Green is promoted to bat above Stoinis and even Labuschagne! He is a man in form, and he played a cameo with an unbeaten 40 off 30 balls. As the pitch is dry and the environment hot in Lahore, expect more help from the pitch to the spinners than the pacers. So, A Zampa and Swepson becomes most important bowlers for Australia.

Pakistan Playing 11: Imam-ul-Haq, F Zaman, B Azam (C), S Shakeel/A Shafique, M Rizwan (WK), I Ahmed, K Shah, M Wasim Jr, Z Mahmood, S Afridi, H Rauf

After a strong batting performance from the top order, Pakistan’s middle-order collapsed like cards. Zampa, Head, and Swepson dismissed the rest of the batters. But the three most important players for Pakistan are – Z Mahmood, I Ahmed, and K Shah. These three are the spin attack of Pakistan. H Ali and M Wasim Jr failed to get any wickets in the previous game. So, the primary bowling responsibilities are on the spinners in the second ODI. Hopefully, Shaheen Afridi will be fit and available for selection, and he will be replacing out of form H Ali.

Players to Watch:

A Finch:
Finch is not in good form, but this ODI series is the right time to catch his form. He averages over 60 against Pakistan in ODIs, and we can expect a big knock from him in the second ODI.

C Green:
He is the man in form, both with the bat and the ball. It will be good for the team if he bats up in the order and provides a better batting option than Stoinis and Carey.

Z Mahmood:
Mahmood will be a crucial bowler for Pakistan if they want to win the second ODI. Mahmood can bowl in the batting powerplay if Babar thinks a bit unconventional to dismiss dangerous Travis Head.

I Ahmed:
Ahmed can bat as well as bowl off-spin. This makes him the second crucial player for Pakistan. He dismissed Travis Head! As an off-spinner, he is the key to dismissing Travis Head. He should bat above Rizwan. He didn’t complete his 10 over quota in the previous game.

K Shah:
Another bowling all-rounder. Australia has nine right-handed batters and K Shah is a left-arm slow bowler. That is why he is the third crucial player for Pakistan.

M Swepson & A Zampa:
Both the leg spinners are in top form and the pitch is helping them too. Both are threats to Babar Azam, and quick googly balls are Achille’s Heel of Babar.

Pitch:

This pitch of Lahore is expected to be dry and help batters. The team winning the toss should opt to bat first here. Dry pitch means there may be a chance of reverse swing. Also, dry and hot conditions may favor spinners to turn the ball in the middle overs. Big totals and scores from players are expected.

Why Can’t Pakistan Beat Australia?

  • Australia won 69 ODI matches out of 102 ODIs.
  • Pakistan managed to win only 3 ODIs vs Australia since the 2011 World Cup.
  • Pakistan has only won 9 ODIs vs Australia since the year 2000.
  • The last time when Australia played the ODI series in Pakistan, Australia managed to clean-sweep the series.