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It was a spectacular game of Cricket a couple of days ago at the Ageas Bowl where England just managed to edge past Pakistan in a closely fought fixture. While Pakistan's losing streak continued to grow with that defeat, they had plenty of positives to take from their loss. For England, it was exactly the opposite. They may have won the match, but there were too many vulnerabilities of their bowling attack highlighted by the Pakistani batsmen. The two teams haven't really got enough time to ponder upon the issues with just a day between two games and it will be interesting to see how the things fare for the two sides when they take on each other once again at the County Ground, Bristol on Tuesday, 14th May.
why they are the number one ODI team in the world. They were without Jofra Archer, who exceedingly well in the first match, and still managed to salvage a win from a situation which looked more to favor Pakistan at the death. Having said that, their bowling lacked depth and ability to take wickets at the crucial junctures of the game which is something which will concern the management.
The main reason for their success over the last few has been their batting. Everyone barring Joe Root, who, too, is an integral part of their batting lineup, is capable of coming out and hitting the ball hard and handsome. Jos Buttler and Eoin Morgan once again exhibited what they are capable of. They both have been prolific for England in the death overs in the last few matches and would have an important role to play not just in the upcoming series, but also in the marquee ICC event.
Not long ago, Eoin Morgan was being termed as a weak link in this English batting unit, but the way English captain has turned it around has been commendable. He averages more than 85 in his last 12 innings which a fantastic strike rate. With the likes of Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, and Ben Stokes still available to bat after Jos Buttler, this England unit is capable to do wonders, as far as batting is concerned.
Their bowling, however, doesn't really have the same sharpness as a few of the best attacks in the world. It was evident with the way all of their bowlers were hammered around the ground in the last match. Having said that, Jofra Archer didn't feature in the second ODI and is likely to be slotted back into the side in the upcoming fixture - which should strengthen their bowling, at least by some margin.
JJ Roy, Jonny Bairstow, JE Root, Eoin Morgan, BA Stokes, Moeen Ali, Joe Denly, CR Woakes, David Willey, Tom Curran, LE Plunkett.
Pakistan haven't really had anything to brag about in the year gone so far. They have played 12 games up until now, in three series, and have won only two matches. Also, if we disregard the washout in the first ODI of the ongoing series, they now have a losing streak of 7 matches.
Their current form is a stark contrast to how they were playing last year. Pakistan were a fantastic ODI unit in 2018, produced some terrific wins, albeit against the likes of Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan.
World Cup 2019 is not too far away and Pakistan have too many reasons to be worried about. Their bowling leaked plenty of runs in the last ODI and while it was same for the English bowlers, Pakistan do not really have the kind of batting firepower England boast of. Apart from Fakhan Zaman and Asif Ali, Pakistan lack someone who can get going from the ball one and do the power-hitting job. Considering this, one would assume their batting to be a little dependable, but it has been extremely fragile as far as recent results are concerned.
Their bowling clearly missed the services of Shadab Khan, but such indisciplined was their bowling and fielding that even Shadab would have struggled to keep the hosts tied. Pakistan did well to eventually make a match of what looked like one-way traffic after the conclusion of first innings and which certainly would be a big takeaway for them in the forgone fixture.
Imam-ul-Haq, F Zaman, Babar Azam, Asif Ali, Haris Sohail, Sarfraz Ahmed, SI Wasim, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan, Shaheen Afridi.
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England have started the series with a bang and the way they batted at the Ageas Bowl may well be the signs for things to look forward to in the ICC Cricket World Cup. Pakistan, too, showed their batting prowess by almost chasing the impossible looking total. On paper, England are definitely a better-balanced unit with almost everyone in their lineup capable to stay at the crease as well as hit it out of the park when the situation demands. Pakistan, on the other hand, lack power hitters and their batting is known to be fragile. Considering that and the fact that England are playing at their home turf, we think the hosts are going to win the upcoming fixture as well and take an unassailable lead.
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