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Pakistan vs Bangladesh | Mission Impossible for Pakistan Against Feisty Rivals

It might have been the high-point of their campaign but now Pakistan enter their final game of the ICC World Cup against Bangladesh at Lord’s on Friday (July 5) with a near-impossible chance of reaching the semifinal

Cricketnext Staff |July 4, 2019, 5:03 PM IST
Pakistan vs Bangladesh | Mission Impossible for Pakistan Against Feisty Rivals

It might have been the high-point of their campaign but now Pakistan enter their final game of the ICC World Cup against Bangladesh at Lord’s on Friday (July 5) with a near-impossible chance of reaching the semifinal. England’s win over New Zealand on Wednesday means Pakistan will need to beat their Asian rivals by over 300 runs — 311 in particular — if they aspire to leave the Black Caps behind on net run-rate.

New Zealand finished their engagements at 11 points from nine matches after their 119-run loss to England but despite the massive defeat, the Kiwis are way ahead in terms of their net run-rate, which is +0.175, compared to Pakistan’s -0.792.

Sarfaraz Ahmed & Co would know that a shocking loss in the opening game of the tournament, when they were bundled out for just 105 by the West Indies has come back to haunt them in the end. Currently placed fifth with nine points from eight matches, Pakistan face the challenge of beating Bangladesh by 311 runs after posting 350 or by 316 runs after scoring 400. If they are forced to bat second, Pakistan’s chances slip to practically zero.

However, that doesn’t mean this contest will be taken lightly by either of the sides. There is no love lost between Pakistan and Bangladesh — both historically and on the cricket field. One of Bangladesh’s most famous wins was over Pakistan in the 1999 World Cup in Manchester, before they got their Test status.

The younger of the Asian rivals will once again look to get one up over Pakistan before ending their campaign in the World Cup. A win for Bangladesh will see them end the World Cup in fifth place instead of Pakistan because of their superior net run-rate. Although it doesn’t make up for the disappointment of not making the semifinal, it will be some consolation for Mashrafe Mortaza’s side.

Once again they will bank on Shakib al Hasan, who is the leading all-rounder in the tournament with 542 runs and 11 wickets in seven games. Shakib will have to contend with a charged up Pakistan pace bowling line-up led by Mohammad Amir who has picked up 16 wickets in seven games.

Pakistan, though, will look to end their roller-coaster campaign with a win to claim the honours of being the ‘best of the rest’.

Last Five ODIs

Pakistan: LLWWW

Their revival in the World Cup came a bit too late in the day. After a 89-run loss (D/L method), Pakistan won three games on the trot over South Africa, New Zealand and Afghanistan. However, as it turns all of this seems to be too little, too late.

Bangladesh: NRWLWL

They have flattered to deceive so far in this World Cup. Mortaza’s side fought valiantly in their last game against India but fell short by 28 runs. They had some impressive wins over South Africa and West Indies but looking back there was no consistency in their performances.

Players to watch out for

Pakistan:

Babar Azam: He was by far and away the most consistent and classiest of the Pakistan batsmen on show. Azam has tallied 378 runs in seven games so far at an average of 63 with one century and two fifties. Although the numbers are impressive, Azam would have hoped for a couple of more centuries with the kind of form he had displayed.

Bangladesh:

Mustafizur RahmanThe young left arm seamer was playing in his first World Cup and didn’t disappoint his team at all. Mustafizur’s accuracy and fine change of pace have brought him 15 wickets in the World Cup so far — including a five-wicket haul against India in the last game. He’ll be a threat to Pakistan both with the new ball as well as in the death overs.

Team News/ Availability:

Pakistan: Wahab Riaz injured his finger in the last game against Afghanistan but valiantly came out to bat and led his side to victory. It remains to be seen if Pakistan will risk fielding Riaz with the injury in the final game.

Bangladesh: Mahmudullah failed to recover from his calf muscle tear for the game against India and Bangladesh really missed his services with the bat. The team will love to have the all-rounder back for the last game against Pakistan.   

Squads:

Pakistan: Sarfaraz Ahmed (captain), Fakhar Zaman, Imam ul Haq, Babar Azam, Haris Sohail, Hasan Ali, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain, Shaheen Afridi, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir, Shoaib Malik, Imad Wasim, Asif Ali.

Bangladesh: Mashrafe Mortaza (captain), Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Shakib Al Hasan, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah Riyadh, Sabbir Rahman, Mehidy Hasan Miraj, Mosaddek Hossain, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain, Liton Kumar Das, Abu Jayed, Mohammad Mithun.

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Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4027 115
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 4366 104
5 Australia 3270 99
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7748 277
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
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