Time: July 28, 7:30 PM IST
Venue: Kensington Oval, Bridgetown, Barbados
No T20I has been played at the venue in the last four years and hence it would be difficult to predict its nature. However, given Kieron Pollard was upset with the pitch provided for the ODIs against Australia, the curators at Barbados would rather dish out conditions that favour the home team.
Rain is forecasted to play spoilsport at the start of the game, but it won’t hang around longer than that. We are expected to get a complete contest.
Probable XI for West Indies: Lendl Simmons, Evin Lewis, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Nicholas Pooran (wk), Andre Russell, Kieron Pollard (c), Dwayne Bravo, Hayden Walsh, Obed McCoy, Fidel Edwards
Probable XI for Pakistan: Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Babar Azam (c), Fakhar Zaman, Sohaib Maqsood, Mohammad Hafeez, Azam Khan, Shadab Khan, Imad Wasim, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Hasnain, Shaheen Shah Afridi
We have opted for a fantasy cricket team based on the recent performances, overall impact, and credit points.
Players to watch out for
Obed McCoy has been West Indies’ best bowler in the format of late. He sniped up 9 wickets at 13.3 in 5 T20Is against South Africa and 5 wickets at 6 in 2 T20Is against Australia. He likes to deceive the batters with change-of-pace deliveries.
If McCoy lays the foundation, Walsh continues the momentum in the middle-overs with his wily leg-spin. He was the highest wicket-taker against Australia, scalping as many as 12 wickets in 5 matches.
Mohammad Rizwan scored 2 fifties in 3 games in England. Before that, he had finished as the second-highest run-scorer in the Pakistan T20 League. He will partner up with Babar Azam at the top: the duo put up a stand of 150 runs in the opening T20I against England.
Andre Russell is, hands down, the best T20 all-rounder in men’s cricket. He has taken 9 wickets in 28 overs in the last 10 matches.
Hasan Ali is more than a bowler he is reputed for. He is also a game-changer with the bat. In the second eliminator of the Pakistan T20 League, he smashed 45 off 16 including 3 sixes and 5 fours. Against England in the second ODI, he managed 31 off 17. He is a man of many talents.
The defending T20I champions lost 2-3 to South Africa and later thumped Australia 4-1. They, nonetheless, have a few chinks to wield before the T20 World in the UAE. Chris Gayle averages 18 in 12 T20Is this year. Nicholas Pooran is slowly getting his form back. Andre Russell can still muscle the ball, but Mitchell Starc showed that Russell can still be outsmarted. And Kieron Pollard has been affected by injuries.
On the other hand, Pakistan have a formidable team, but they have a knack for losing momentum. On their day, they can hammer any great team. On other days, they find ways to lose a match.
That being said, these are two of the most exciting T20I teams. Expect a thriller of a series.