About the Match
Australia has already won the series but would want to end the home summer of ODI cricket with a win. Pakistan is playing for pride and would desperately want to win this match keeping ranking points in mind.
5th ODI Preview
The Aussies are already thinking about further challenges ahead as they have a short t20 series against Sri Lanka, an ODI series against New Zealand and then the all important tour to India. This does not mean though that they do not want to sign off with a 4-1 victory over Pakistan.
This match is going to be important for players that are going to be rested from the upcoming limited overs leg and be preparing for the tests instead. For players like Usman Khawaja, this could be the last opportunity to impress before competitors Shaun Marsh and Aaron Finch come in and try to take his place away.
There is a lot of competition around this Australian team and one of the benefits that come with it is that no player is going to take it easy for this match.
David Warner has now scored 5 ODI hundreds in his last 10 matches and it seems that he or Steve Smith are always among the runs. Australia will look to big runs from their batsmen in this match also, particularly if they get the chance to bat first on a pitch expected to be excellent for batting.
An unchanged team can be expected from the Aussies as they have traveled to Adelaide with only 13 players. Billy Stanlake has been sent across the pond to New Zealand to get some extra time before the ODI series nest week.
We think Glenn Maxwell and Steve Smith are the batsmen to back in this game from Australia as they have displayed some wonderful form. Warner has traditionally not done too well in dead rubbers and could end up throwing his wicket here as well.
The Aussies will need to challenge themselves because this Pakistan team has not provided much of a challenge to them. A lot of focus will also be on the performances of Pat Cummins and Adam Zampa. The young leggie, Zampa, did very well in the last match picking three wickets and would be raising questions as to his omission from the test squad to India.
Cummins would also want to cap his first full ODI series after injury with some wickets and most importantly to remain injury free. Josh Hazelwood is fast becoming one of the best bowlers in this format of the game and we back him to take the most wickets one again.
Pakistan has not been among the top rated ODI sides for a quite a while now and it could be said that this series loss was expected. Pakistan’s only consolation will be their victory in the second ODI when they won an international match against Australia in Australia after 12 years. Despite all of the odds being stacked against them, though, Pakistan had their chances in this series.
The first match seemed to be going their way before they allowed Australia’s lower order to stage a remarkable comeback and were competitive for a while in the third game as well.
The real difference between the two sides has been the fielding. Pakistan has dropped catches, given away runs and run poorly between the wickets. It is the one facet which showcases how far behind Pakistan have been left behind as compared to the other teams.
One of the pleasant surprises though for Pakistan on this tour has been the consistency with which Sharjeel Khan has been scoring runs for his country. The real big score has been missing but he has provided a rapid start to Pakistan in every match so far.
Babar Azam has also been batting well in this series and he looks like someone who is going to be around for the foreseeable future. Shoaib Malik is also making the most of his comeback and has scored 128 runs at an average of 64.00 so far.
One statistic though showcases the real problem Pakistan has been having in this format of the game. Only Sharjeel Khan is scoring at a strike rate of above 100 in the team with everyone else scoring below. Imad Wasim is the only player who comes close with a strike rate of 95 but he has only made 63 runs in the tournament so far.
The ODI format has moved on from the times when 300 could be considered a winning total and 330 is the new benchmark teams aspire to. Pakistan unfortunately just does not seem to have understood this fact so far.
Hasan Ali and Mohammad Amir have been the standout bowlers for Pakistan and taken plenty of wickets in each match. Ali leads the wickets tally from both teams with 10 while Amir is in second place with 7 wickets.
The onus is once again on Pakistan’s bowlers to try and keep the Aussies batsmen in check and to compensate for their inferior batting strength.
The Adelaide Oval is not Australia’s favorite ODI ground and they have lost four out the last seven ODI’s here. Being a dead rubber, Australia could also be complacent and make mistakes that they would not ordinarily make.
All of this and more would need to happen though for Pakistan to win this match. We would recommend sticking with the favorites and backing Australia to win again