Independence Cup: Pakistan to face World XI in series decider today
LAHORE: All eyes are on Pakistan’s cricket lineup to see how they will perform against star-studded World XI today (Friday) in the thrilling finale of Independence Cup at Gaddafi stadium here, ARY News reported.
Both teams have secured a single victory in the three-match Twenty20 (T20) series, while the event today is of immense significance as the winning team of the event would clinch the series trophy.
The skippers of either team have expressed their resolve to win the third and last crucial match after home-side beat the host team by 20 runs in the opening match.
In the second T20 match, Sri Lanka all-rounder Thisara Perera hit a towering six off the penultimate ball to steer the World XI to a thrilling seven-wicket win.
Appearing confident for a triumph, World XI captain Faf du Plessis said that his team would be playing the last game with a similar mind set as the second game to achieve their set goals.
“It is not going to be easy at all for us as Pakistan team has the added advantage of home ground and crowd and it has also the ability to fight back due to some good players in the side and we have to overcome all these challenges,” he further said.
Meantime, Pakistani skipper Sarfraz Ahmad said that it is a very important match for his team and they will be going all out to win.
Calling his team for showing consistency, he said the victory is only possible when all the players would exhibit their best performance. “It’s time for Pakistani pacers to bowl with more vigour and accuracy to shatter the confidence of the opponents’ strong batting lineup,” he added.
Pakistan team coach Mickey Arthur has said his team would have to be more disciplined to seize the historic T20 International series against the World XI.
Pakistan Squad (possible)
1 Ahmed Shehzad, 2 Fakhar Zaman, 3 Babar Azam, 4 Shoaib Malik, 5 Sarfraz Ahmed (capt & wk), 6 Imad Wasim, 7 Faheem Ashraf, 8 Shadab Khan, 9 Sohail Khan, 10 Hasan Ali/Usman Shinwari, 11 Rumman Raees
World XI Squad (possible)
1 Tamim Iqbal, 2 Hashim Amla, 3 Tim Paine (wk), 4 Faf du Plessis (capt), 5 Thisara Perera, 6 David Miller/George Bailey, 7 Darren Sammy, 8 Ben Cutting, 9 Samuel Badree, 10 Morne Morkel, 11 Imran Tahir
Pitch and conditions
The pitch will play no different to the first two games, and another high-scoring contest is expected. The second game was slightly disrupted by windy conditions, but nothing of the sort is expected for the finale.