Pakistan Vs New Zealand, Match Preview
The New Zealand Cricket team enter Pakistan after 18 years. They last played in the nation back in 2003, and boy has a lot changed since then. Both sides have changed captains loads of times, and multiple eras have gone through from the last visit to now.
New Zealand, World Test Champions, and World Cup finalists are possibly the most prestigious sides coming to Pakistan in the last few years. They have some stars in the IPL, and are playing a largely second-string side. Despite several absentees though, New Zealand still bring a lot to the table.
With the T20 World Cup, and IPL on its way, the series may not have too many eyes on it. With the lack of DRS in the series, a huge part of the context has been removed. The series is not part of the World Cup Super League. With a little less to play for, the sides can use this chance to build on their strengths and work on their weaknesses.
For Pakistan, this tour has a lot of significance though. They have persuaded New Zealand to come back for the first time since 2002, when a bomb attack stopped a series mid-way. They have some major changes in their support staff as well. Waqar Younis and Misbah-Ul-Haq have stepped down as coaches.
There has been very little ODI Cricket ever since the 2019 World Cup. With the lack of ODI Cricket, predictions have been a little tough on how the format may go. Nevertheless, New Zealand come with new faces, looking to grab some spots in the national side. Pakistan has a lot of responsibility to bring out the best in their team and ensure New Zealand enjoy their stay in Pakistan.
Pakistan Vs New Zealand, Team News
Nawaz is out of the series and Ifktikhar comes in. Imam-Ul-Haq will open along side Fakhar Zaman while Shadab Khan continues as an all-rounder.
Tom Blundell has been ruled out, and Tom Latham will be taking the gloves. While leading the team, he now has added responsibility, while Finn Allen and Rachin Ravindra are likely to make their debuts.
Pakistan Vs New Zealand, Predicted XIs
Pakistan: (probable): 1 Fakhar Zaman 2 Imam-ul-Haq 3 Babar Azam (capt) 4 Saud Shakil 5 Mohammad Rizwan (wk) 6 Iftikhar Ahmed 7 Shadab Khan 8 Hasan Ali 9 Usman Qadir 10 Haris Rauf 11 Shaheen Shah Afridi
New Zealand (possible): 1 Rachin Ravindra 2 Finn Allen 3 Will Young 4 Tom Latham (capt&wk) 5 Henry Nicholls 6 Colin de Grandhomme 7 Cole McConchie 8 Scott Kuggeleijn/Doug Bracewell 9 Ajaz Patel 10 Jacob Duffy/Blair Tickner 11 Matt Henry
Pakistan Vs New Zealand, Players to Watch out for
Tom Latham has a good record in the subcontinent, and will be eager to improve his record in Pakistan. He is in Pakistan for the first time. With captaincy and keeping, Latham has a huge responsibility, and will be donning multiple hats through the game.
Hasan Ali has been in good form in recent times. He did well in the West Indies Tests, and managed to hold his own in the England ODIs. Despite losing the series, Hasan Ali remained a bright spot with his aggressive bowling. With a World Cup coming up, Ali will be eager to get to his fiery best soon.
Pakistan Vs New Zealand, Pitch and Conditions
The conditions will likely be better than what was found in Bangladesh. Pakistan generally has some assistance for the seamers, and dew could play a role later in the game. The conditions are hot and humid. With dew likely to play a role, chasing is a better option.