About the Match
It will be survival of the fittest as Pakistan takes on West Indies to fight for a semi-final berth on Apr 1st at Dhaka; both teams are tied at 4 points each from 3 matches played so far though the Windies are slightly better on net run rate. Pakistan defeated Bangladesh in a must-win match on Sunday to keep their hopes alive while West Indies won emphatically over Australia to make it to the second spot in the Group 2 points table. The teams have been faring well in all departments of the game and have had similar fortunes till now; with the players equally matched and displaying good forms, the contest will definitely be a close one.
Deciding to bat first against Bangladesh, Ahmed Shehzad got off to a rocking start as he punished the bowlers and posted an unbeaten 111 runs off 62 deliveries that steered the team’s total to 189 runs though there were major hiccups on the way. While the rest of the top order failed to build partnerships, Shoaib and Shehzad put up an 83-run stand for the 4th wicket and later Shehzad was joined by Afridi to take the scoreboard ahead. With a good total to defend, the bowlers worked their magic; Umar Gul was once again instrumental in getting quick wickets as he wrapped up 3-30 and his senior, Ajmal got 2 wickets giving away 20 runs. Together the duo caused havoc for the hosts as they struggled at 47-4 in the chase. Afridi and Babar also got a wicket each in the middle and the bowlers kept a strong hold on the match, winning it easily by 50 runs. West Indies will be a different ball game as the bowlers will have to keep up with the heroics of hard-hitters like Gayle and Sammy. The batsmen also need to sharpen their skills and must build strong partnerships right from the start; the upcoming match is a crucial one and the players will have to fight hard here.
The team came together when it was required the most and won emphatically against Australia to send the opponents packing; Sammy and Bravo finished the chase for 179 runs with 2 balls to spare as they posted a 49-run stand for the 5th wicket. Earlier Gayle got off to a thunderous start as he scored 53 runs off 35 balls and built strong half-century partnerships with Smith and Simmons to punish the Aussie bowlers. It was complete domination as the Windies easily won the match by 6 wickets, making it an uphill task for Australia to make a comeback into the tournament. Earlier, the bowlers had a mixed day as they did get wickets but weren’t as economical as expected; Badree, Samuels and Narine claimed 2 wickets each and did well to make the Aussies falter. The team will have to fight harder against Pakistan as they too will come out all guns blazing; if the players can give a concerted effort and keep a positive attitude; they can surely achieve their goals here.
It will be a tough game on Tuesday as both teams are vying for the semi-final berth; though West Indies will be eager to continue on their winning momentum, Pakistan looks much more confident to perform under pressure and emerge victorious in the end.
Pakistan, 1.90 @ Bet365