|Finished.132 & 231 - 510/8|
There’s no shortage of fairy tale affairs in cricket, with Zimbabwe themselves pulling one off in their second T20, but the first Test of their two-match series against Pakistan ended up being a stoic lesson in reality. Absolutely walloped by their guests, the Chevrons must now regroup and most importantly select a better playing XI. Pakistan in the meantime will have gotten some of their complacency back, and will likely field many a newbie. With the fate of the series still on the line, let’s take a look at the two teams.
Predicted XI for 2nd Test vs Pakistan
Sean Williams (c), Regis Chakabva (wk), Kevin Kasuza, Luke Jongwe, Roy Kaia, Tarisai Musakanda, Blessing Muzarabani, Richard Ngarava, Victor Nyauchi, Milton Shumba, Brendan Taylor.
Zimbabwe team preview and form
An innings defeat is one of the worst fates in cricket, and for the last 17 years, Zimbabwe have been no stranger to it. Bizarrely, they rested both Luke Jongwe and Sean Williams. Batting first, it was a shoddy start to the innings from the top order. Roy Kaia’s 48 being the highest score speaks volumes about the state of the innings, and with Milton Shumba and Donald Tiripano being the only others to even crack 20, the hosts were bowled out for an unceremonious 176. When it came time to bowl, Blessing Muzarabani was in his element as he picked up 4, with Donald Tiripano’s triple and Richard Ngarava’s double helping Brendan Taylor’s men bowl their opponents out at long last.
Down by 150 and despite Prince Masvaure being absent hurt, Zimbabwe got off to a promising start as Kevin Kasuza put up 28 and Tarisai Musakanda got 43. However, only Brendan Taylor’s 29 stood out after that as the rest of the players collapsed like dominoes for Taylor’s men to lose by a massive margin.
Zimbabwe key players for 2nd Test vs Pakistan
Brendan Taylor: Looking in good nick near the end, Taylor will have to go big for his team.
Sean Williams: Hopefully, the captain will come back and play a namesake knock.
Blessing Muzarabani: The only consistent bowler (or indeed, player) in Zimbabwe must play his best game.
Luke Jongwe: I honestly don’t know what Zimbabwe’s selectors were drunk on to exclude the young talent in the first match.
Predicted XI for 2nd Test vs Zimbabwe
Babar Azam (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Imran Butt, Sajid Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Tabish Khan, Hasan Ali.
Pakistan team preview and form
It was business as usual as Pakistan took revenge on the hosts for the loss they faced 8 years ago - not to mention the T20 loss from a few days earlier. Fielding first, Shaheen Shah Afridi and Hasan Ali tore up the pitch to pick up 4 each and choke the hosts out for just 176. In their own first innings, Pakistan’s Imran Butt and Abid Ali opened strong with 91 and 60 respectively, and after Fawad Alam’s robust 140 was supported by decent contributions from Azhar Ali, Mohammad Rizwan, and Hasan Ali, Pakistan had built up a strong 426.
Hasan Ali merely seemed to resume his rampage as he swiped up 5 more, and this time it was Nauman Ali who supported him with 2 of his own. Soon enough, Babar Azam’s men had cleaned out their opponents to win by an innings and 16 runs.
Pakistan key players for 2nd Test vs Zimbabwe
Babar Azam: After a surprise golden duck in the first match, Azam will look to return for some heavy runs.
Fawad Alam: Since his return to the squad, Fawad Alam can’t seem to stop scoring centuries.
Hasan Ali: After picking up a Player of the Match award in the first Test, Hasan Ali will be the bowler to watch out for.
Sajid Khan: Unlucky not to pick up a single wicket on his debut, we think - or rather hope - Sajid Khan will be back for some success.
Zimbabwe vs Pakistan 2nd Test pitch report and weather conditions
The pitch at the Harare Sports Club is one that lends itself much more to bowlers than batters, who will have to get used to the motion of the ball off of it before they can look to score freely. This will get worse over time, so expect teams to bat first and aim for 350+.
Despite cold mornings, the temperature in Harare should warm up and become very pleasant as the sun rises higher in the sky. Combined with little or no precipitation, humidity levels slightly below average, and a slight breeze, conditions for cricket can hardly be any better over a five-day period.
Can Zimbabwe answer back after an overwhelming loss? Or will Pakistan continue their rampage over the hosts? Find out if our Zimbabwe versus Pakistan 2nd Test predictions come true starting Friday!
|ZIM Top Batsman:|
|PAK Top Batsman:|
|ZIM Top Bowler (Wickets):|
|PAK Top Bowler (Wickets):|
|Players to score a fifty:|
|B Taylor/S Williams/T Musakanda (ZIM), F Alam/B Azam/M Rizwan (PAK)|
|Players to score a century:|
|B Taylor/S Williams (ZIM), F Alam/B Azam (PAK)|