Deadline: November 29, 2019 at 9 AM IST
Venue: Adelaide Oval, Adelaide
The Adelaide Oval has a reputation of producing gripping contests, giving equal opportunities to everyone. The last here, between India and Australia, saw a six-for from a spinner, a century, and plenty of reverse-swing for the quicks. We cannot ask for more if we get the same ingredients for the second Test.
Probable XI for Australia: David Warner, Joe Burn, Marnus Labuschagne, Steven Smith, Matthew Wade, Travis Head, Tim Paine (c & wk), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood
Probable XI for Pakistan: Shaan Masood, Azhar Ali (c), Haris Sohail, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Yasir Shah, Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah, Imran Khan
NOTE: Pick your fantasy cricket team wisely.
We have opted for a fantasy team on the basis of players’ impact, recent performances, and credit points.
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Note : You can now select 1-4 wicketkeepers, 1-6 batsmen, 1-6 all-rounders, 1-6 bowlers.
Wicketkeeper: Mohammad Rizwan, Matthew Wade
Batsmen: Joe Burns, Asad Shafiq, Babar Azam (c), David Warner (vc), Steven Smith
All-rounders: Marnus Labuschagne
Bowlers: Yasir Shah, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon
Pakistan’s loss at Brisbane was their 13th consecutive in Australia. They could have avoided it had they not slumped down from 75 for no loss 94 for 5. Shan Masood and Azhar Ali had done well to see off the new ball on the morning of the first day, but as always is the case with Pakistan cricket, they lost the plot.
Barring that session, Australia had an easy time in the middle. Their top three batsmen scored as many as 436 runs between them and their bowlers played well as a cohesive unit.
Players to watch out for
There’s a reason the selectors did not axe David Warner after scoring a mere 95 runs in The Ashes. He is a different batsman when he plays at home, and he showcased why. His 154 runs in the first Test involved only 10 boundaries, showing the importance of running between the wickets in the massive grounds of Australia. More importantly, he was watchful and chose his strokes wisely.
Marnus Labuschange is in the form of his life, having scored 4 fifties and a century in his last 5 Tests. Just like Smith, he isn’t the most attractive player but mentally tough. He can bat until the opposition forgets how to play the game.
Pakistan may have lost the first Test, but their biggest moment of triumph was when Yasir Shah dismissed Steven Smith for a meagre 4. For that matter, it was the seventh time Yasir got the better of the second-best Test batsman ever. That being said, a big score is due from Smith. You never know.
Babar Azam proved his class, scoring a century in the second innings. It may have gone in vain, but it was a delight to watch him. However, he’s got to be aware of Josh Hazlewood who has dismissed him four times thus far.
Joe Burns, Asad Shafiq, Matthew Wade, and Mohammad Rizwan collected a half-century each – Burns and Rizwan got out in the nervous 90s.
Given the way Australia have been playing of late and Pakistan’s record since 1995 Down Under, the series is likely to end 2-0.