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HomeCricket1st ODI Preview: Can Pakistan continue their ODI momentum?

1st ODI Preview: Can Pakistan continue their ODI momentum?

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Last Updated on 6 years by Charbel Coorey

The current World Cup finalists up against the Champions Trophy winners.

Pakistan’s limited overs tour of New Zealand begins in Wellington, and will be looking to maintain the incredible ODI momentum they built in 2017. Including their magnificent Champions Trophy triumph, Pakistan have won nine straight ODIs. However, six of these nine came against struggling Sri Lanka, so this will be a big test of their ODI credentials. A series win in New Zealand will get the cricket world standing up and thinking that Pakistan can win in foreign conditions such as England and New Zealand, and it’s really time we take them seriously as a top ODI side.

For New Zealand, their current form is pretty decent, too. A series win against West Indies doesn’t say much, but their efforts in their recent limited overs tour of India showed they won’t be pushovers against any team. Their disappointing Champions Trophy campaign forced them to fix their middle order problems, and the move to have Tom Latham in the middle order, to further support the likes of Kane Williamson and Ross Taylor, has been a good one, despite a relatively quiet series v West Indies. I’m especially looking forward to seeing whether Colin Munro can continue his electrifying form, against what is a superior Pakistan attack.

Key to a New Zealand win

New Zealand’s bowlers challenging the Pakistani batsmen.
Despite Pakistan’s amazing 2017 in ODI cricket, these will be foreign conditions for them, which will be a test. New Zealand’s bowlers, especially Trent Boult, simply blew West Indies away, and for New Zealand to get a good start in this series, a good bowling performance is important to ensure their batsmen aren’t under too much pressure against an excellent Pakistan attack.

Key to a Pakistan win

Fearless attitude.

It can be very easy for Pakistan to play cautious cricket in foreign conditions, but this can’t be the case. Like in the Champions Trophy, Pakistan need to play confident cricket and back their ability. Their bowlers in particular can help set the tone.

Predicted teams:

Kane Williamson returns to the New Zealand side, and Tim Southee is also expected to return. Much will be expected from these two, as well as Colin Munro, Martin Guptill and Trent Boult.
New Zealand XI: 1. Colin Munro, 2. Martin Guptill, 3. Kane Williamson (c), 4. Ross Taylor, 5. Tom Latham (wk), 6. Henry Nicholls, 7. Mitchell Santner, 8. Todd Astle, 9. Tim Southee, 10. Lockie Ferguson, 11. Trent Boult
Pakistan won their tour game so well, so it will be interesting to see if they go with Imam Ul Haq. Imam Ul Haq should be given the opportunity in my opinion, but I think they will go with Azhar Ali, to stick with the same team that won the tour game. I am also very interested to see what impact Babar Azam can have in New Zealand.
Pakistan XI: 1. Azhar Ali, 2. Fakhar Zaman, 3. Babar Azam, 4. Mohammad Hafeez, 5. Shoaib Malik, 6. Sarfraz Ahmed (c & wk), 7. Faheem Ashraf, 8. Shadab Khan, 9. Mohammad Amir, 10. Hasan Ali, 11. Rumman Raees

Stats & Facts:

  • New Zealand have won 11 of their last 12 matches against Pakistan in all formats.
  • Pakistan have won nine ODIs in a row.
  • Hasan Ali: 26 ODIs, 56 wickets, avg. 19.82

Prediction:

Pakistan came alive as an ODI side after being thrashed by India in their opening game of the Champions Trophy. I look at Pakistan’s bowling attack, especially Hasan Ali, and they can seriously challenge New Zealand’s batting, which was barely tested vs West Indies. For that reason, I will go with Pakistan to cause an upset and go 1-0 up in the series, with their batting to also hold up well.
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Charbel Coorey
Charbel Cooreyhttps://cricblog.net
Charbel is the owner & founder of cricblog.net, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has also been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at charbelcoorey@cricblog.net.

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