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|Colin de Grandhomme||64||71||6||1||90.14|
|Colin de Grandhomme||2.0||0||12||0||6.00|
With England losing to Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and Pakistan registering massive wins in their respective games has left the points table in an interesting shape. Although England are still hot favorites to get into the top-four along besides India, New Zealand, and Australia, Pakistan and Bangladesh have a realistic chance to qualify for the playoffs. The battle between Bangladesh and Pakistan could prove to be a virtual quarter-final if England fail to win at least two of their remaining fixtures. However, before that, they'd have to register a win over New Zealand in their upcoming encounter which is to be played on 26th June at Edgbaston Cricket Ground, Birmingham. With New Zealand already looking well set to make it to the playoffs, this game is of more importance to Pakistan, and they'd come out all guns blazing to come on keep their semifinal hopes alive.
New Zealand and India are the only two teams that are yet to lose a game in the tournament so far. They have survived a couple of near scares - one against West Indies and the other one against South Africa. Carlos Braithwaite massive assault in the death overs raised some serious questions over their death bowling, which had been immaculate until then.
They have their share of problems which were highlighted against West Indies, but the way Kane Williamson has handled the team has been commendable. After the first couple of games, their openers have, by and large, struggled to get going in the powerplay overs. Kane Williamson, however, did well to bail them out of trouble in the last two matches, but considering that no one else apart from Ross Taylor has been able to stay at the crease, their batting doesn't look as stable as it looked during the start of the tournament.
The major difference between them and the teams they've won against has been Kane Williamson and their allrounders' performances. Mitchell Santner, Colin de Grandhomme, and James Neesham have all played match-winning roles at least once in all the matches they've played so far. Their bowlers have done well with Lokie Ferguson, Matt Henry, and Trent Boult all picking up wickets in the tournament so far, and despite their apparent vulnerabilities, the fact that they've done so well in the competition so far speaks volumes about their team-play. They have the momentum with them with no loss yet in the tournament and will undoubtedly be tough to handle in the upcoming encounter.
Martin Guptill, Colin Munro, KS Williamson, Ross Taylor, TWM Latham, James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson, TA Boult.
Considering a probable place in semi-finals at stake, the spotlight will be on Sarfaraz Ahmed and his boys at Birmingham on Tuesday. Their performance in the tournament has been binary so far wherein they've either posted a terrific win or have gone down terribly. Against South Africa, in their last match, however, they looked surprisingly sharp with the bat and in the field which they went on to win by a good margin.
Their campaign in the tournament thus far carries a striking resemblance to the one which World Cup winning side of Pakistan had way back in 1992. Considering that they have relatively easier games to follow after this would give them plenty of confidence as well as motivation to do well in the upcoming fixture.
Up until now, both their batting as well as bowling has done well, but sporadically, and without much consistency. Babar Azam has had a couple of good innings to his name but has failed to post an innings of substance. Imam Ul Haq, as well as Fakhar Zaman both, have scored well, but they too have been unable to convert their starts into a big knock.
The inclusion of Haris Sohail in the previous match could prove to be the tonic they needed as he not only played a brilliant knock in the last game but also sparked some self-confidence in Pakistan's middle-order which was found lacking in their loss against India.
Their bowling too hasn't been as good on the field as it is on paper. Barring Mohammad Amir, who has gone for less than five runs an over in all the matches combined in the tournament, their bowling unit has expended runs at more than seven runs an over. Having said that, their bowling displayed a much-improved performance against South Africa which may well be the beginning of the fairy-tale for their bowling.
Considering the way Pakistan have done in the series so far, it's hard to predict what they can do. On their day, they can be genuinely brilliant, and when it's not their day, they can appear to be a club-level team, with no disrespect, as was the case in their match against West Indies.
Imam-ul-Haq, F Zaman, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Haris Sohail, Sarfraz Ahmed, SI Wasim, Shadab Khan, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir, Shaheen Afridi.
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With New Zealand showing superb grit and determination in their last two matches and Pakistan's ability to topple any team on their day, the upcoming contest is sure to be a nail-biting encounter. There are plenty of positives and negatives for both the sides, as mentioned above, but its how they play on Wednesday is what is going to matter. Also, we think that New Zealand are better equipped to handle the pressure of a big game primarily due to their experienced batting unit. Kane Williamson has led the team beautifully and because of that as well as the fact that the Kiwis have had a better run in the tournament as compared to Pakistan and are a better-balanced team makes them favorites to win the upcoming match and consequently knock Pakistan out of the competition.
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