Pakistan's strongest XI for T20 series against Australia
Pakistan and Australia have already come off the back of a two-match Test series, which without the services of Usman Khawaja, would have ended in a 2-0 result in favour of the Pakistan side.
Leaving that behind, Australia wanted to make a fresh start with the beginning of the T20 series between the two sides based on three matches.
Starting in Abu Dhabi, Pakistan did well with the bat in the first 14 overs and made 109-2, before completely losing the plot and folding for 155-8. Only Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, and paceman Hasan Ali made respectable scores that lifted the team.
Australia were the favourites to chase down the ordinary total, that was until Imad Wasim bowled his third ball in the first over. The Kangaroos lost 6 wickets within the first six overs, a first-time achievement for Pakistani bowlers, and ended their innings at 89 all out, losing the match by 66 runs.
Even though it can be said that Pakistan was flawless in their bowling performance, they need to make some adjustments to the batting line-up by tinkering with the winning XI.
Let's take a look at the perfect T20 combination that can be formed with the squad at hand for the remainder of the 3-match series.
Openers – Fakhar Zaman & Babar Azam
Fakhar Zaman is the firecracker that Pakistan had been looking for a long time. Averaging 30 in 22 innings, Fakhar strikes the ball at an impressive 142 runs per 100 balls.
This gives him an edge over the other openers who have represented Pakistan since the beginning of the decade and has allowed him to become a regular in the side.
Fakhar should be retained for the second and third T20 even if he fails to make an impact as he did in the first T20, falling for just 14 runs.
Babar Azam, on the other hand, is the calmer and more dependable opener when it comes to T20s. He averages a mammoth 57.85 in the format with a strike rate of 127.15. That’s no easy feat in the fast-paced format where you either hit out or get out.
Babar has a high score of 97* in T20Is and made the biggest impact with the bat in the previous match where he scored 68 not out in 55 balls and carried the innings through amid a collapse.