|Finished.169/6 (20) - 166/6 (20)|
Following Pakistan’s triumph against the visitors in the Test series, the two teams will now go head to head in 3 T20s. Pakistan will be in high spirits, and after having played a lot more T20 in the last few months than their opponents, will definitely fancy another series victory, if not another whitewash. The Proteas, on the other hand, will want revenge after the humiliation in the Tests, and will want to win everything in sight. With both teams being much better at T20s than Tests at the moment, the stage is set for a hard-fought series full of action. Before the fighting begins, let’s take a look at the two teams.
Babar Azam (c), Aamer Yamin, Amad Butt, Asif Ali, Danish Aziz, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Qadir, Zafar Gohar, Zahid Mehmood, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed.
Babar Azam (c), Haider Ali, Asif Ali, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Faheem Ashraf, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Sarfaraz Ahmed.
Preview and form
Pakistan’s will have mixed feelings about their T20 performances as of late. A drawn series against England in England looks great, as does a whitewash against Zimbabwe, but a 2-1 defeat in New Zealand does not inspire confidence. That being said, it’s certainly not a bad record to have. Babar Azam will lead the team and be the shining beacon of batting prowess as usual, and he’ll be joined by Asif Ali, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Rizwan, Haider Ali, and Sarfaraz Ahmed. Meanwhile, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, and Mohammad Hasnain will be out to exploit what the Gaddafi Stadium pitch offers fast bowlers, while Faheem Ashraf will be there to provide spin support along with some pinch-hitting.
PAK Key players
Babar Azam: As the standout batsman on the team, Babar will probably keep making this list until his form dips greatly.
Faheem Ashraf: No matter what he does with the ball, he will very likely put in a strong cameo with the bat.
Haris Rauf: The talented fast bowler will love bowling at home once again.
Shaheen Shah Afridi:As T20 seems to be more his format, Afridi will be looking to make the best of it.
Heinrich Klaasen (c), Nandre Burger, Okuhle Cele, Junior Dala, Bjorn Fortuin, Reeza Hendricks, George Linde, Janneman Malan, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Ryan Rickleton (wk), Tabraiz Shamsi, Lutho Sipamla, Jon-Jon Smuts, Jacques Snyman, Glenton Stuurman, Pite van Biljon (wk).
Heinrich Klaasen (c), Reeza Hendricks, George Linde, Janneman Malan, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Tabraiz Shamsi, Lutho Sipamla, Jon-Jon Smuts, Pite van Biljon (wk)
Preview and form
With no de Kock, van der Dussen, Ngidi, or Rabada, this South African lineup feels somewhat like the West Indies team that played ODIs against Bangladesh. Add to that the fact that the team has only played 3 T20s in almost the last year, and lost the last 3 T20 series they played, and you casee why I don’t have great hopes for them. Nevertheless, Heinrich Klaasen leads the team with Reeza Hendricks, Janneman Malan, David Miller, Jon-Jon Smuts, and Pite van Biljon to support him with the bat, while Lutho Sipamla, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, George Linde, and Dwaine Pretorious will be the main bowlers.
SA Key playersHeinrich Klaasen: It’s time for Klaasen to show his ‘Klaas’ and lead by example.
Janneman Malan: After his brilliant debut, Malan will once again have the chance to flex his skills with the bat.
Andile Phehlukwayo: In the absence of more regular quicks, Phehlukwayo will have to bear the mantle and pick up the crucial wickets.
Lutho Sipamla:Like Phehlukwayo, Sipamla will have to punch above his weight.
Head to head
Unlike their Test stats, the T20 win ratio between these two teams is much more hotly contested. Pakistan have won 6 of their 14 encounters, with the Proteas winning the rest. There’s no doubt that the home side will want to exploit the current state of the South African team to tip the stats in their own favour, but it won’t be easy.
Pakistan vs South Africa 1st T20 weather conditions and pitch report
The weather in Lahore should be fantastic for cricket, with clear skies, a comfortable temperature, little or no chance of rain, and a soft breeze blowing.
The pitch at the Gaddafi Stadium provides great support for fast bowlers, but that also means that the ball will come on to the bat nicely and batsmen will be able to score freely if they can master the swing and the cutters.
Can Pakistan take the lead in the T20 series like they did in the Tests? Or will South Africa finally get their act together and surprise the hosts? Find out if our Pakistan vs South Africa 1st T20 predictions come true on Thursday!
|PAK Top Batsman:|
|SA Top Batsman:|
|PAK Top Bowler (Wickets):|
|SA Top Bowler (Wickets):|
|Players to score a fifty:|
|B Azam/F Ashraf (PAK), H Klaasen/J Malan (SA)|