The opening match between England and South Africa at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 is just 9 days away. As the teams are getting ready for the biggest mega-event of cricket, fans are excited for some thrilling matches in the course of 45 days.
Pakistan has done fairly well at the quadrennial event of cricket. Pakistan cricket team won the 1992 World Cup under the leadership of Imran Khan. They won only one title in the 11 editions of the world cup so far. While they have been in the finals once in the 1999 World Cup, where they lost to Australia. Pakistan has been the Semifinalist, 4 times in 1979, 1983, 1987 and 2011. While they have reached the Quarterfinals in 1996 and 2015. They have a win-loss record of 40-29 at the ICC Cricket World Cup.
Pakistan has a good batting and bowling combination in their squad. The team won the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 held in England and they’ll hope to repeat their performance at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. However, Pakistan has not played many ODI series with the top teams and their latest results on England tour haven’t been pleasant. Pakistan would reach the semifinals of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
The Batting order of the Pakistani team looks strong with the likes of Sarfraz Ahmed, Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam. Pakistan’s batsmen scored big runs during their latest England tour. The lowest total made by Pakistan was 297 runs in 47 overs.
The Bowling lineup of Pakistan looked very weak against England. They leaked many runs during the whole series. The lowest total for England during the season was 341 runs, which shows the poor performance of the Pakistani bowlers in England.
Pakistan brought in Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz in their finals 15-member squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. Also, right-handed batsman, Asif Ali was included in the squad announced on Monday evening. The three players will replace Abid Ali, Junaid Khan and Faheem Ashraf from the preliminary squad. The decision was taken after the poor performance of the bowlers during the England tour.
Pakistan will face Afghanistan in their first warm-up match on May 24 at Bristol County Ground. They’ll play against Bangladesh on May 26 at Sophia Garden in their second and last warm-up match before the start of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
Pakistan will start their world cup campaign against West Indies on May 31. They’ll face a tough task ahead as they play the hosts England on June 3. Next up will be Sri Lanka on June 7 before playing against Australia on June 12. Pakistan will face their arch-rivals India on June 16 which is the most awaited match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. South Africa and New Zealand will be their next opponents on 23rd and 26th June respectively. They’ll play their last two matches of the Round-robin against Afghanistan and Bangladesh on 29th June and 5th July respectively.
The final squad was announced on Monday evening with 3 changes from the preliminary 15-member squad.
Sarfraz Ahmed (c), Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Hafeez, Asif Ali, Shadab Khan, Imad Wasim, Haris Sohail, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Amir, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Hasnain.
Pakistan won the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 title in England against all the odds. They are not the favourites to win the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 but they’ll aim to repeat their performance of the ICC Champions Trophy.