West Indies mysteries have no ends as they have already lost 2 of their 4 matches in the ongoing series against Pakistan. The T20 defending champion have never in that touch again and have lost 5 consecutive international twenty overs matches against the excitable Pakistan with two of the loss coming in the upcoming series.
The best which the Indies team can do is to level the series of 4 games with 2-2 but for this, they have to win their next two games against Pakistan. Both the remaining matches are scheduled on the slow track of Trinidad and it would be difficult for the Caribbean team to fight a win if they don’t find some suitable answer to Shadab Khan bowling. The 18th-year-old already have won two men of the match in as many games and has total scalps of 7 wickets. His unreadable Googlies have had better of Pollard and Powman who have become his bunnies.
The score of 132 was defended by Pakistan on the verge of fine bowling by Shadab Khan. And penultimate over from Wahab Riaz which helped his side to register a win with a margin of 3 runs. The match had seen a boiler fight between Samuels and Shadab Khan which in the end gone in the favor of the Pakistanis. All the other bowlers too chipped in well and they have never allowed West Indies to take a toll on them in both the matches.
Pakistan too had problems with their batting, last match total posted to a decent score courtesy a little cameo in the end by Wahab Riaz. Their PSL stars Ahmed Shahzad and Kamran Akmal have failed to deliver which adds extra pressure on Babar Azam and Shoaib Malik. West Indies, on the other hand, have shown improvement signs with their bowling but their area of concern will be their batting performance which would come out handy in winning over Pakistan.
When: West Indies vs Pakistan, 1 April 2017, 22.00 IST
Where: Queen’s park oval, Trinidad, Port of Spain
What to expect: run making would not be easy, there is 20% rain chance and it would be about 33 degrees of temperature.
West Indies LLLLL (last five completed matches, most recent first)
West Indies: the main area of concern for the Indies is their batting especially in the middle order. Lindl Simmons have the total of 21 runs from his 5 20-20 matches while on the other hand Rowman Powell looks clueless against leg spin. Last time they didn’t make any changes but in this decider match, Jason Mohammad might get to play a game.
West Indies (probable): Evin Lewis, Chadwick Walton (wk), Marlon Samuels, Lendl Simmons, Keiron Pollard, Rovman Powell/Jason Mohammad, Carlos Brathwaite (capt), Sunil Narine, Jason Holder, Samuel Badree, Kesrick Williams
Pakistan: on the other hand Pakistan combination looks decent and they are unlikely to make any changes. there is the slight possibility of having Hafeez in place of Kamran Akmal if they need an extra spin option.
Pakistan (probable): Ahmed Shehzad, Kamran Akmal/Mohammad Hafeez, Babar Azam, Fakhar Zaman, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed (capt & wk), Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Sohail Tanvir, Hasan Ali, Wahab Riaz
In the spotlight:
Wahab Riaz: having played a match-winning cameo and bowling a deciding penultimate over that too delivering with a wicket is a sign of Riaz having the best of his form. He will be handy in this game too.
Marlon Samuels: With a little banter with 18th-year-old Shadab Khan, Samuels was the highest run scorer for the Indies in the last match and he will look to fancy his chances more.
Prediction: West Indies will surely pull out this game to remain alive in the series.
Stats and trivia:
- Marlon Samuels has now played 51 T20I innings without ever being dismissed for a duck in the format. Only Angelo Mathews has played more innings (54) in the format without falling for naught.
- Shadab Khan is only the third player to have won the Man-of-the-Match award in his first two T20Is, after Sanath Jayasuriya and Ajantha Mendis.