pakistan cricket team
The series is currently locked at 1-1 (AFP Photo)

From being the underdogs to being the favourites, Pakistan have seen significant a change in their fortunes against New Zealand in the ongoing three-match ODI series in the space of three days. A hat-trick from Trent Boult condemned them a 47-run defeat, their 12th straight defeat against New Zealand in ODI cricket on Wednesday. But a day’s rest was enough for them to bounce back with a clinical show and register a convincing six-wicket win to draw level at 1-1 on Friday.

Pakistan seemed to have overcome the issues that have plagued them in the 50 over cricket. The new-ball bowlers struck early, the opposition batsmen were strangled in the middle-overs and they didn’t allow them any late release either, restricting the final total to 209/9. Their reply was emphatic – the top-order clicked with opener Fakhar Zaman hitting 88 after his partner Imam-ul-Haq retired hurt following a blow to helmet. Babar Azam struck 46 before falling alongside Zaman in an over of Lockie Ferguson.

For New Zealand, the series so far has been a mixed bag. They will have struggled in the batting department with the middle-order being exposed earlier than to their liking. The veteran Ross Taylor has been their saving grace who has scored 80 and 86* in two innings. The bowlers also failed to make early strikes in the second ODI allowing Pakistan to run away in the chase. A change in tactics is expected in the third and final ODI.

Date: November 11, Sunday

Time: 4:30 pm (IST)

Venue: Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai

Weather: Sunny, hot and humid with a high of 32 degrees Celsius

Team News

Pakistan

Imam has been kept under observation after sickening blow and is doubtful for the series finale. Mohammad Hafeez could be promoted to open the innings.

Probable XI: 1 Imam-ul-Haq, 2 Fakhar Zaman, 3 Babar Azam, 4 Shoaib Malik, 5, Mohammad Hafeez 6 Sarfraz Ahmed (c&wk), 7 Faheem Ashraf, 8 Imad Wasim, 9 Shadab Khan, 10 Hasan Ali, 11 Shaheen Afridi

New Zealand

Taylor has been scoring runs but others have failed to put up a fight. Opener George Worker has been struggling as well and will be under pressure. However, the dearth of options could mean New Zealand could field the same XI

Probable XI: 1 George Worker 2 Colin Munro 3 Kane Williamson (c) 4 Ross Taylor 5 Tom Latham (wk) 6 Henry Nicholls 7 Colin de Grandhomme 8 Tim Southee 9 Trent Boult 10 Lockie Ferguson 11 Ish Sodhi