Resurgent Australia will be looking to build on their recent success and start on a good note against Pakistan in the opening game of the one-day series in Sharjah on Friday. The visitors will need to make adjustments to the slow and low surfaces that will prevalent in the UAE.
Australia Captain Aaron Finch was pleased with his side’s performance in the one-day series played against India earlier this month. Finch will be keen to do well in this five-match one-day series.
On the other hand, Pakistan will be keen to get back to winning ways after losing their previous one-day series in South Africa.
Captain Shoaib Malik will lead the side for the five-match one-day series as Sarfaraz Ahmed has been rested. Umar Akmal, Yasir Shah, Haris Sohail, Junaid Khan make their return to the side.
Uncapped Pace bowler Mohammad Hasnain could certainly make his debut in the opening game of the one-day series.
For Pakistan, the one-day series will give opportunity to the home side to build their bench strength for the future.
In the batting department, the side will be relying on the likes of Imam-ul-Haq, Shoaib Malik and Haris Sohail to do the bulk of the scoring. Opening batsman Imam-ul-Haq has been consistent performer for the side in limited-overs cricket. He was excellent for the side in the one-day series played against South Africa. Mohammad Rizwan will be first-choice for wicket-keeping duties for this one-day series.
Yasir Shah and Imad Wasim will be two spinners for this game. Faheem Ashraf will also be included in the squad to bolster batting resources.
Possible XI: Imam-ul-Haq, Shan Masood, Haris Sohail, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik (captain), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Imad Wasim, Faheem Ashraf, Yasir Shah, Mohammad Amir/Junaid Khan, Mohammad Hasnain.
For Australia, Shaun Marsh could come in place of Glenn Maxwell, who also did take in the practice session due to illness. Marsh will need to deliver runs in this one-day series in order to cement his place in the squad for the upcoming Cricket World Cup.
Aaron Finch, Usman Khuwaja and Peter Handscomb are the in-form players for the side in limited-overs cricket. The batting trio were instrumental in helping Australia win the one-day series against India. Pat Cummins and Jhye Richardson will take new-ball for the side for this opening game.
Nathan Lyon and Adam Zampa will certainly play this game as conditions will assist the spinners in Sharjah.
Possible XI: Aaron Finch (captain),Usman Khuwaja, Peter Handscomb, Glenn Maxwell/Shaun Marsh, Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Turner, Alex Carey (wk),Nathan Lyon, Pat Cummins, Jhye Richardson, Adam Zampa