Where: Trent Bridge
Who: West Indies vs Pakistan
Pitch: Expect the run-fest
When it comes to attacking display of cricket, the first team that comes to our mind is West Indies. Literally, every single player can hit the ball out of the park right from the word go.
Batting: With some of the best power hitters in the team, West Indies can very well be the first team to reach that 500-mark if they continue to perform like they did the other night against New Zealand.
Shai Hope, who made ton the other night will be playing the anchor role if needed while the other players can play around him.
Starting from Chris Gayle followed by Evin Lewis, Shai Hope, Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmeyer, Andre Russell to Jason Holder everyone literally approaches the game in the same way and it is going to difficult for the bowlers to control them but then, the players do have their own set of weakness and it is in the hands of the bowlers to exploit them.
Considering the conditions, West Indies will be happy to go in with all pace and a lone spinner in the form of Ashley Nurse.
Sheldon Cottrell might be given an opportunity because he can bat a bit and can be dangerous with the ball in condition like this as well.
Though the team looks great on papers, Pakistan has been a side that is yet to find the winning form and it is important that they start well here and their first job is to restrict West Indies to a below par score.
Unlike the West Indies, Pakistan batter doesn’t try to hit right from the ball go but once they get to settle in, they like to play long innings and their records have been impressive. Especially, Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam. Azam’s form is a plus for Pakistan and what’s more impressive is that he has played some great knocks against the same opponent.
The only thing that is to be worried is that the strike rate. Though the top order scores a lot of runs, they do eat a few deliveries, a concern.
Pakistan definitely will look to address this and they would like to make things easier for their lower order batters like Asif Ali who almost pulled off a win the other night and would have got to the total with ease if the top order batters scored a bit quick.
Bowling: Once Pakistan had a team that had some of the best bowlers in the world and the batsmen feared them. Though the team consists of a lot of talent, they lack when it comes to handling the pressure. Shaheen Afridi is an example of that. The youngster is full of talent but is unpredictable as he suddenly underperforms.
Still, Pakistan, if they stick as a unit, they can overcome the West Indies challenge with ease.
Dark Horse: Shaheen Afridi, Sheldon Cottrell(if picked)
Players to watch out for:
Shai Hope (and literally every single batter in Windies). For Pakistan, Babar Azam has three centuries against West Indies.
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