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"Zimbabwe need to find a way to get across the line" - These were the words of Chamu Chibhabha, Zimbabwe's skipper, before the opening match of the series. He was pretty right as Zimbabwe pushed Pakistan well in the opening game only to crumble before getting over the winning line. The match added 10 World Cup Super League points to Pakistan's tally and nothing to Zimbabwe's. Zimbabwe will have another opportunity to grab those points in the 2nd ODI match, which is to be played on Sunday, 1st November at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi. Just like the first match, this one promises to be a mouth-watering contest as well.
Pakistan continued to march on their merry ways as they registered their sixth consecutive win in the last match. The experience of playing in the bio-bubble England seem to come in handy as they appeared to be a team having better coordination and composure between the two. Apart from that, Zimbabwe had played a fair bit of domestic cricket and that apparently helped the players to stay in touch with the game.
While the hosts won the first match with considerable ease at the end, their performance was not at all clinical. They struggled with the bat in the initial overs and their cooperation or lack thereof was visible when Haris Sohail and Imam Ul Haq were involved in the unfortunate run-out of the latter as both those batsmen ran towards the same end. Apart from Imam and Haris, none of their batsmen looked in complete control. However, a late surge with useful cameos from their lower middle-order pushed Pakistan to a total of 281, which proved to be just enough.
With the ball as well, Pakistan were nowhere near their best but crawled their way back as the match progressed. Wahab Riaz and Shaheen Shah Afridi were absolutely brilliant at the death as they defended 46 runs off the last 5 overs with considerable ease. Apart from Riaz and Afridi, however, none of their fast bowlers looked threatening. Rather Haris Rauf and Faheem Ashraf gave away 114 runs in their 20 overs combined and failed to pick up even one wicket. Shaheen Afridi was their pick of the bowlers as he returned with incredible figures of 10-0-49-5. Riaz picked up 4 for 41 in his 9.4 overs.
Going into the second match of the series, there's not a lot that Pakistan would have to change. Perhaps a better application of the skills will fix the issues that they exhibited in the first match. Also, Babar Azam talked about giving youngsters a fair run before the series started and we might see that happen in the third match, if not the second. All in all, Pakistan are a pretty good team and will be pumped with the comeback they scripted in the first match. Beating them is not going to be easy in the upcoming match as well.
Imam-ul-Haq, Abid Ali, Babar Azam, Haider Ali, Mohammad Rizwan, Iftikhar Ahmed, Faheem Ashraf, SI Wasim, Muhammad Musa, Haris Rauf, Shaheen Afridi.
Even though Zimbabwe didn't win the first match, they won hearts - plenty of them. It was a pleasant surprise for many cricket fans to see them so close to winning the match, but as their skipper said, they need to focus on closing games from good positions. In the first match as well, they got almost everything right apart from getting across the line.
It was a story of two parts in each innings for Zimbabwe as they did remarkably well but failed to seize the important moments. Their bowlers bowled in tight channels in the beginning and kept Pakistan's batsmen on the back foot for the most part of the innings. However, Zimbabwe's bowlers struggled in the death overs as Pakistan managed to post an above-par total.
With the bat as well, Zimbabwe were in the game for the most part, thanks to a brilliant partnership between Brendan Taylor and Wesley Madhevere. Craig Ervine played well for his 41, but except for those three players, none of Zimbabwe's batsmen managed to put the foot on the gas pedal. It was an even more sorry state at the death as they lost their last six wickets for just 21 runs.
Looking at the proceedings of the first match, it is apparent that Zimbabwe failed to handle the crunch situations and ultimately paid the price. The conditions at Rawalpindi didn't really bother the visitors, but the fact that they had been away from cricket for a long period probably impacted the way they approached the crunch situations. We expect them to be better in the upcoming match and if they can do better in the crunch moments, there's no reason why they can't cause an upset in the upcoming match.
Brian Chari, Chamu Chibhabha, Craig Ervine, BRM Taylor, Sean Williams, Wesley Madhevere, Sikandar Raza, Tendai Chisoro, Carl Mumba, Richard Ngarava, Blessing Muzarabani.
We saw a total of around 280 almost chased down in the first match. The surface didn't really change during the day in the first match and that is likely to be the case yet again. Given that the dew won't be a factor in the upcoming match, we expect the captain winning the toss to bat first.
Read our guide on toss predictions to learn how we analyze and come up with our tips.
While the venue for this match is the same as the first match, the surface that will be used is likely to be different. There is expected to be light grass on this surface as well and the quick-bowlers might enjoy bowling with the new ball. As was the case in the first match, dew will not be a factor here. Cool-weather with ample sunshine during the day and no rain to play spoilsport means an excellent day to play Cricket. The teams will be well acquainted with the surface and batting will, therefore, be a lot easier than it was in the first match. The team batting first will want to post a total of at least 280 runs on the board.
Check out the Dream11 fantasy team lineup for the 2nd ODI between Pakistan and Zimbabwe. Don't forget to check back the latest updated team lineup right after the toss.
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Unlike what was expected by many, the first One Day International proved to be a rather close game. Both teams seemed to be well acquainted with the conditions at the ground and are likely to come back even stronger in the upcoming match. Despite emerging on top, Pakistan would want to iron out the few wrinkles they had in the previous match. Zimbabwe, as well, would need a better performance from their youngsters. As it stands after the first match, Pakistan are a stronger team on paper and have the advantage of playing at home. They have experience oozing right through and that proved to be useful in the first match as well. Therefore, for the reasons stated above, we expect Pakistan to win the upcoming match and take the unassailable lead in the series.
Haris Sohail was easily the best batsman for Pakistan in the first match and seemed to understand the nature of the surface. He generally plays risk-free cricket and dismissing him early will take a colossal effort. Considering the form he is in and the fact that he bats high in the batting order, we think that he should easily score more than 28 runs.
While we saw both sides do pretty well with the bat in the first match, things could turn out to be a lot different in the second match. That is largely because the surface is likely to be a lot slower in the upcoming contest. Hitting through the line will not be easy and stroke-making will not be possible from the outset. For that reason, we expect the match total to remain below 526 runs.
Brendon Taylor showed his class in the first match as he smashed a scintillating hundred. He is the most experienced batsman that Zimbabwe have and is likely to play the role of a sheet anchor. He will be difficult to dismiss given the form he is in and should easily hit a personal score of at least 26 runs.
Craig Ervine was once of the few batsmen who looked comfortable in the first match. It took a peach of a delivery to dismiss him in the first match. The fact that he is from the underdog team allows for excellent returns on this bet. This is certainly a lucrative option for those looking to play it safe.
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