The T20 World Cup is scheduled to commence on 17th of October in UAE. The conditions aren’t alien for Pakistan who have been touring and competing a lot in UAE over the last few years, home ground event for Pakistan.
Early afternoon, the PCB named a well balanced 15+3 man squad for the upcoming mega ICC tournament. Shoaib Malik and Sarfraz Ahmed fail to grab a spot and young guns who are yet to perform on international level are named in the squad for the T20 World Cup.
UPDATE : Hours after PCB announced their squad for the T20 World Cup Pakistan’s head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and bowling coach Waqar Younis stepped down from their respective roles. So, there’s enough for Pakistan to address before the mega ICC event.
ALSO READ – COACHES RESIGN AHEAD OF BIG ICC TOURNAMENT : https://wp.me/pd8tMB-nv
Opening isn’t a concern for Pakistan, they have figured a formula and have stuck to it, tried and tested formula of Babar Azam and Mohd Rizwan, there shouldn’t be a change as it’s been rewarding, with Fakhar Zaman in the reserve there’s clarity on the opening. Middle order has been an area of concern for Pakistan where there’s been fair bit of changes and experiments, lately they’ve preferred having young guns who’ve come in after PSL performances and will hope the promising names put in their best and raise to the occasion.
Spin department has been Pakistan’s strength, 3 frontline spinners in Mohd Nawaz, Imad Wasim and Shadab Khan, all three are all rounders and hence a lot will depend on these bowlers to deliver and with the bat to put up cameos and provide good finishings. Mohd Hafeez too is a handy part-timer, has the knack of picking wickets and with the bat at 3 or 4 will be their first choice.
Pace bowling too has been an area of concern for Pakistan, as a unit there haven’t been many promising displays, it’s been individuals who have a good day or two. Pakistan do have a good bowling attack and also the variety one would look at and ask for but will have to map out and hand a plan to pacers to stick to, they have to be disciplined to perform. Hasan Ali and Shaheen Shah Afridi will lead the pace bowling department, Haris Rauf and Wasim Jnr will have to be good from other end. The pace bowling department has let the team down on occasions despite good spin bowling and batting performances.
Pakistan T20 World Cup squad : Babar Azam (C), Shadab Khan, Asif Ali, Azam Khan, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Khushdil Shah, Mohd Hafeez, Mohd Hasnain, Mohd Nawaz, Mohd Rizwan, Mohd Wasim Jnr, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Sohaib Maqsood.
Reserves : Shahnawaz Dahani, Usman Qadir and Fakhar Zaman.
Pakistan in their opening game will be up against India on 24th of October, mark your calendars for crickets oldest rivalry. On 26th of October Pakistan face New Zealand and on 29th will be up against Afghanistan. Last two games Pakistan will meet A2 and B1 (teams to qualify from round 1 fixture) on 2nd and 7th of November respectively.
Pakistan are favourites going into the tournament, but the road isn’t easy. They do have the team but there are departments to work on for Pakistan and a podium finish is doubtful but Pakistan is always a team who hand surprises.