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We are just a couple of weeks into the World Cup and the rain already has had a big impact on a few of the matches. The weather forecast for the next few days isn't too bright either and we are likely to see almost every game being impacted by it. Next in line is Australia taking on Pakistan, who both have had a similar kind of tournament thus far. Australia are a little better placed on the points table as compared to Pakistan with one more win in as many matches played. The two teams are set to clash on 12th June at Cooper Associates County Ground, Taunton. The World Cup so far has seen many steps and troughs with teams either scoring in excess of 300 or getting out rather cheaply. Almost one-third of the tournament is already done and dusted and we are still to get to a concrete result, going by how the tournament so far.
While Australia are sitting pretty in the top half of the table, their performances in the last two games have been far from satisfactory. Coming into the match against West Indies on the back of a clinical win over Afghanistan, the Kangaroos lacked the same kind of aggression and control against West Indies. Against India, they were outplayed in all departments of the game and suffered a rather one-sided loss.
Going by the performances of their players in the first three matches, Australia appear to be a fairly settled unit. Their top-order has done reasonably well and whenever it hasn't, the likes of Coulter Nile and Alex Carey have negotiated the way for them. Steven Smith, David Warner, and Aaron Finch have all been amongst the runs, but lack of considerable support against Windies and India would be worrisome for the management.
Their bowling against India wasn't as bad as it was made to look by some terrific batting by Indian batsmen. Mitchell Starc and Patrick Cummins were terrific upfront but failed to pick up wickets which in turn impacted on their middle-overs as well as death overs bowling. Also, the absence of a fifth bowler was felt too as Maxwell, Stoinis, and Zampa leaked runs at regular intervals in all their overs combined.
All in all, Australia haven't really done much wrong. They've been found in tricky situations in two matches and while they managed to get out of the pit against West Indies, they were buried further in by India. It will be interesting how they take that loss against India and if they can iron out the flaws which were on display at London a couple of days ago, Australia would be a team to beat.
David Warner, Aaron Finch, Shaun Marsh, Steven Smith, Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, KW Richardson.
Sometimes genius, sometimes idiotic, but always unpredictable - this is a saying that has been associated with Pakistan cricket team since they've stepped into the international scene. The saying is still true and was seen in their last completed match where they toppled England quite convincingly.
They had to settle with just one point against Sri Lanka wherein they were arguably the favorites to win the match. Pakistan have so far been the only team that has seen both ends of the spectrum, as far as the results are concerned. They were shot down for 105 against West Indies where they were bombarded with a barrage of short deliveries which their batsmen struggled to handle.
Against England, they started off in a similar fashion, losing out two quick wickets, but the way Mohammad Hafeez and Imam Ul Haq went about the rebuilding business, their management would have have been pretty happy. Even though they have a batting lineup that has been unpredictable, we have seen them score petty well on English surfaces, especially in the series preceding the World Cup.
Their bowling was a major problem for them coming into the World Cup, but the form of Mohammad Amir has been one of the positives for them. They would also have taken heart from the way Hasan Ali and Wahab Riaz delivered at the death against England. With Shadab Khan back into the side along with the likes of Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik, they have plenty of bowling options at their disposal which is an icing on the cake with the deep batting lineup they have.
Overall, the equation stands for Pakistan. They have a terrific lineup which has a good amalgamation of youth and experience and can be world beaters on their day. One can argue that they have a batting lineup that lacks the firepower to go berserk in the slog overs, but the same notion was dismissed by Hafeez and Co. when they accelerated in a fabulous manner towards the end of the innings.
Imam-ul-Haq, F Zaman, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Sarfraz Ahmed, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Wahab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Amir.
Check out the complete Dream11 lineup for the 17th World Cup match which is to be played between Australia and Pakistan
With World Cup moving towards its middle stages, things are certain to get exciting. The performance of the teams will govern how they'll have to fare in the fag end of the tournament. Similarly, this upcoming game could play a major role on how things pan out towards the end of the tournament for both these sides.
Disregarding Pakistan's wash-out, both the sides have had a similar campaign so far and it's hard to pick between them. Having said that, the Australians have shown a fewer number of vulnerabilities as compared to the Pakistanis which places them marginally ahead. Also, they have been in super form and won ten of their last eleven matches. Considering that and all aforementioned reasons, the Aussies are firm favorites to win the upcoming contest and strengthen their position in the points table.
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