The World Cup is at its best as we progress towards the end of league stage. The 43rd match will be played by two Asian teams; one with rich history in cricket, while the other one has been on the headlines for creating it at present.
This battle is probably the last interesting league stage match left as Pakistan still has a minimalistic chance left to qualify for semis. If the Men in Green do register a win, they will tie with the Kiwis at 11 points each and it will be the NRR that will decide who gets through.
Pakistan (Probable XI): Imam ul Haq, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Mohammad Hafeez, Sarfaraz Ahmed (C&WK),Imad Wasim, Shahdab Khan,Wahab Riaz, Shaheen Afridi,, Mohammad Amir.
Bangladesh (Probable XI): Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim (WK), Liton Das, Mahmudullah, Mosaddek Hossain, Mehidy Hasan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mashrafe Mortaza (C), Mustafizur Rahman.
Babar Azam vs Mustafizur Rahman
The current poster boy of Pakistan; Babar Azam is the 8th ranked ODI batsman. With an average of 52 in ODIs, Azam walked into this tournament as one of the key players for his team.
With 378 runs so far, Azam is the 10th highest run getter in this tournament. Babar got off to a shaky start in this tournament with only 30-40 scores which he failed to convert.
However in the later half, he made up for it by scoring a crucial century and consistent 45+ scores.
The right-hander is considered to be Pakistan’s future and its said rightly so with the current form Babar is in.
Mustafizur has been a one in a million find for Bangladesh. The left-arm seamer is considered to be one of the best ODI bowlers at present.
As soon as Fizz broke out to the scene, he won Man of the Match awards for both his Test and ODI debut, making him an elite member of the bowlers club.
With 15 wickets so far, Mustafizur is the 7th highest wicket taker in this World Cup. The 11th ranked ODI bowler has 98 wickets in 53 played matches.
Shaheen Afridi vs Shakib al Hasan
The child prodigy has been wrecking havoc in this tournament ever since his first game in this tournament.
Regarded highly by his National team coach, Afridi is one of the quickest bowlers in the Pakistan side. The left-arm quick can bowl consistently over 145+, along with picking a good line.
With 34 wickets in just 18 matches, Shaheen will be seen leading Pakistan’s bowling attack in coming years. The youngster at present has 10 wickets in this World Cup, in 4 played matches.
Shakib is nothing but the man of the moment at present. With 542 runs and 11 wickets, Shakib is running miles ahead for the man of the tournament trophy at present.
The No.1 ODI all-rounder has been at his very best in this tournament and has helped his side secure wins with his all-round performance.
With 4 half-centuries and 2 centuries, Shakib has been the star of this tournament as the Bangladeshi veteran has been productive with the ball as well.
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This Asian battle will be a close call for sure as both the sides are expected to fight tooth and nail.
The Pakistani side will be seen going extra hard today; as be a slight chance, but they still have their semi-final hope alive.
However, Team Cricwizz predicts that Bangladesh will cause an upset for the Pakistani side with their current form and clinch this match from their fists. The close match will be won by Bangladesh and Pakistan will be officially knocked out of the World Cup.