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Amid the growing concerns about cricketing action in India, the focus once again shifts to the series between Zimbabwe and Pakistan. The first match of the series was won comprehensively by the tourists and they'll be looking to add another test win to their tally. Zimbabwe, on the other hand, did well in the T20s but failed to repeat the feat in the longest version of the game. The second and final match of the series between Zimbabwe and Pakistan is set to begin on 7th May 2021 at Harare Sports Club, Harare.
Before this series, Zimbabwe took on Afghanistan in a two-match series in the United Arab Emirates. They started that series on a happy note, defeating the Afghans by a thumping margin of ten wickets, but have posted lackluster performances since then. They were defeated by a big margin in the second match and followed that loss with a poor show against Pakistan.
Zimbabwe looked listless in the first match of this series as they came second in both departments of the game. While their bowling still did well on a surface that had almost nothing for the bowlers, their batting fell like a pack of cards. They were bowled out for 176 inside the first two sessions of the first day and then managed just 134 runs in the second innings, losing the match by 116 runs.
In the first test, Zimbabwe had their moments of brilliance but those were too little too few. They were unable to deal with Pakistan's pace attack and that is something they have to prepare for going into the next match. Making a comeback into the national side, Brendan Taylor looked comfortable in the second innings and will be looking to dominate in the middle in the second test. In fact, he is a decent option to bet on as the best batsman of the match for Zimbabwe in the second match.
On paper, Zimbabwe have plenty of talent available, but not much experience. Owing to injuries, they do not have their full-strength side available and the onus will be on Brendan Taylor, who is also leading the side, to guide them to decent positions in this upcoming match. On the bowling front, Zimbabwe have some excellent fast bowlers available and if they can put Pakistan's batsmen under pressure, Zimbabwe may well just get the moment they are waiting for.
BRM Taylor, Regis Chakabva, Tarisai Musakanda, Kevin Kasuza, Milton Shumba, Luke Jongwe, Roy Kaia, Donald Tiripano, Blessing Muzarabani, Richard Ngarava, Tendai Chisoro.
Pakistan, who have been brilliant in recent times, will be looking to add another one to their trophy cabinet by registering a win in this match as well. Going by the way they fared in the first test between Zimbabwe and Pakistan, it shouldn't be too difficult. Having said that, they are known to be a very unpredictable side and are capable of producing unexpected surprises.
The main architect for Pakistan in the first match was Hasan Ali, who picked up nine wickets in the match as he used his reverse-swing skills perfectly. Given that Zimbabwe haven't dealt a lot with high-quality fast bowlers in recent times, Hasan Ali would be a major threat for them yet again. He is pretty likely to pick more than a couple of wickets in the first match and that is one bet that could prove profitable.
Pakistan had to bad only once in the opening match and they will not be disappointed with the way they batted. They lost their skipper, Babar Azam, for the first-ball duck, but that didn't hinder them from getting a decent total of 426 runs on the board. Fawad Alam, who has been brilliant ever since featuring against South Africa, top-scored with a 204-ball 140.
On paper, Pakistan have a terrific side. With the likes of Hasan Ali and Faheem Ashraf, they have a batting lineup that goes deep. Having said that, given the form of their top-order, it is very unlikely that desperate performances with the bat will be required by Pakistan's tail. The likes of Hasan Ali, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan, and Shaheen Shah Afridi will shoulder the load with the ball and should not be too easy to deal with. As was the case in the first match, beating Pakistan shouldn't be easy by any stretch of the imagination.
Abid Ali, Imran Butt, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Fawad Alam, Mohammad Rizwan, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Tabish Khan, Nauman Ali, Sajid Khan.
While things would be a little difficult in the first hour of the match as far as batting is concerned, batting should get easier thereafter. Besides, no team would want in the fourth innings when the surface will be at its worst. Keeping those things in mind, the captain winning the toss will be looking to bat first.
Read our guide on toss predictions to learn how we analyze and come up with our tips.
The surface showed signs of being tired in the first match itself and we are likely to see an even slower surface in this upcoming match. Considering the weather at Harare, the surface will break fast, and scoring runs will not be easy. There will be a bit of assistance for the quicker bowlers in the first few sessions and spinners will take charge later in the match. The first couple of days will be the best time to bat in this match. Considering the conditions, the team batting first would want to post a total of at least 350 runs here.
Check out the Dream11 fantasy team lineup for the 2nd test between Zimbabwe and Pakistan, which is to be played from 7th May. Don't forget to check back the latest updated team lineup right after the toss.
Find more Dream11 predictions and other tips and tricks on our dedicated Dream11 guide.
While this match may not carry as much importance as some of the other tests do, both sides will want to do well here. A win for Zimbabwe could go a long way to help them revive cricket at home. For Pakistan, this match is an excellent opportunity for their youngsters to perform and score a win. Comparing the two sides on paper and their recent respective results, betting on a Pakistan's win should be a way to go here.
While Pakistan's batting did well in the first match, Zimbabwe's batting barely managed to score 300 runs in the two innings combined. Zimbabwe have a rather inexperienced batting unit, which we believe will find it difficult to face Pakistan's bowlers yet again. We believe the total match score across four innings will be less than 985.
Pakistan's batting has relied heavily on Fawad Alam in recent times and the man hasn't disappointed. He has loads of experience of playing at the domestic level and that experience has proved to be extremely helpful in dealing at the international level. He was the best batsman for Pakistan in the first match and has all the chances to be one in this upcoming match as well. Bet on Fawad Alam to be the best batsman from the Pakistan camp.
Pakistan have an excellent pace battery that troubled Zimbabwe leaps and bounds in the first match. Hasan Ali was the wreaker-in-chief and he was ably supported by Shaheen Shah Afridi. Hasan Ali is a canny operator who has remarkable control over old as well as the new ball. Bet on Hasan Ali to be the top-bowler for Pakistan in the second match of the series.
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