Zimbabwe vs Pakistan: First ODI Preview and Playing XI
After winning the T20I tri-series, Pakistan will look to extend their dominance in the 50 overs format, when they take on Zimbabwe in the first match of 5-game ODI series on July 13 at the Queens Sports Club in Bulawayo.
Pakistan : After winning nine ODIs in a row, the winning streak came to a shuddering halt with a 0-5 series loss in New Zealand; the only series they have played so far this year. Matches were lost by quite a big margin. But the visitors are coming on the back of a T20I tri-series win, which should give them confidence and momentum heading into the ODIs.
Pakistan's batting strength resides mainly in Fakhar Zaman. He was their most consistent batsman in the T20I tri-series with three fifties in five matches. Shoaib has been their consistent run-getter with the most ODI runs for the side from the current squad. With the ball, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Shadab Khan and Yasir Shah form a lethal bowling attack. Amir was the pick of the lot in the tri-series. Shadab will not be easy to score off.
Expected Playing XI : Sarfraz Ahmed (C), Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Shoaib Malik, Yasir Shah, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan, Mohammad Amir, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez and Babar Azam.
Zimbabwe : Zimbabwe are going through torrid times, having been struck by injury blows to some of their in-form players. Also, 5 of their first-choice players remain unavailable. So the hosts are basically playing a second-string team and it will be extremely tough for them to stretch a team like Pakistan. The hosts have been dealt a major blow with in-form batsman Solomon Mire being ruled out of the ODI series due to a hip injury. They are already missing the services of their fast bowler, Kyle Jarvis, who is nursing a thumb injury.
With the bat, the Zimbabweans will mainly rely on the likes of Hamilton Masakadza and Elton Chigumbura. With the ball, Blessing Muzarabani and Tendai Chatara will be the main threats to this lineup. Muzarabani with five wickets in four games, was the standout bowler for the hosts in the recent T20I tri-series involving Pakistan and Australia. While Chatara has 73 wickets in 54 ODIs has the ability to trouble the Pakistani batsmen with his express pace.
Expected Playing XI : Hamilton Masakadza (C), Tarisai Musakanda, Peter Moor, Tendai Chisoro, Blessing Muzarabani, Wellington Masakadza, Tendai Chatara, Elton Chigumbura, Malcolm Waller, Donald Tiripano and Chalu Chibhabha.