Solidifying the rankings in the ODI table will be the other biggest thought running in the mind of Pakistanis, apart from a ‘series win’, as a win tonight will see them stay firm at the No. 8 rankings. The win in the previous game was a breather for the visitors and should have helped them to recover from the shock loss in the opening ODI.
West Indies, on the other hand, despite losing a chance to gain a straightway series win, has surprised managed to surprise Pakistan and have managed to stay on par. The visitors expected the series to be a simple affair but were made to work hard. These factors make up for an interesting contest and the legions of fans representing both Pakistan and West Indies will expect a cracker of performances when the proceedings begin at the Providence Stadium on a newly laid wicket.
West Indies may be entering without fast bowling spearhead, Shannon Gabriel who picked up a hamstring issue in 2nd ODI. Gabriel is scheduled to undergo treatment and will have a fitness test on the morning of the match. If Gabriel fails to recover then youngster Miguel Cummins can play his 3rd ODI of his career as the like to like replacement. Pakistan has no selection worries and will go in with the same XI that levelled the series.
The rest of the line-up will remain same mostly. The only deciding factor for West Indies, as well as Pakistan, will be consistency. Both teams have had multiple star performers in the last two games but not a single name did well in both the games.
Evin Lewis did well in the first game but failed in the second. Same has been the case with Kieran Powell and Jason Mohammad. All-rounder and skipper of the side Jason Holder must be ready to play with added responsibility.
In the Pakistan camp, openers Ahmed Shehzad, Kamran Akmal and Mohammad Hafeez fall under the ‘blow hot, blow cold’ group. Babar Azam, the star in the previous game, should look forward to maul the opposition once again. The century in the previous game must have reminded the hosts of the dazzling performances he came up with when both the teams last met in a bilateral contest in UAE.
In the bowling department, Pakistan will also have a tough time picking one out of Junaid Khan and Wahab Riaz. The suspense about who will make the cut will only be unveiled at the toss time.
The century in the previous game must have reminded the hosts of the dazzling performances he came up with when both the teams last met in a bilateral contest in UAE. In the bowling department, Pakistan will also have a tough time picking one out of Junaid Khan and Wahab Riaz. The suspense about who will make the cut will only be unveiled at the toss time.
- Babar Azam has scored 1306 runs after 25 ODIs, the most runs by any batsman. The previous highest was by Jonathan Trott of England, who scored 1280 runs in the same number of games.
- West Indies has not beaten Pakistan in the past 26 years. The last time they beat the Men in Green was way back in 1991. Since then, Pakistan has won 8 out of the 9 bilateral contests (One was a drawn series in 1993)
West Indies: Evin Lewis, Chadwick Walton, Kieran Powell, Shai Hope (WK), Jason Mohammad, Jonathan Carter, Jason Holder (C), Ashley Nurse, Devendra Bishoo, Alzarri Joseph, Miguel Cummins
Pakistan: Ahmed Shehzad, Kamran Akmal, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed (C & WK), Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan