World Cup 2019: Pakistan opt to bat first against South Africa

World Cup 2019: Pakistan opt to bat first against South Africa

LONDON: Sarfaraz Ahmed won the toss and elected to bat first in the must-win encounter of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 between Pakistan and South Africa at Lord’s on Sunday.
Pakistan need to win all four of their remaining matches, and rely on the outcome of a few other matches, in order to have a shot at making it to the top four.
“Looks like a good batting pitch and some grass cover on it,” Sarfaraz said after winning the toss. “We are not thinking about the pressure, just focusing on the game, which is very important for us.”
Pakistan are currently ranked number nine on the World Cup points table, just above Afghanistan with one win (against England), three losses (against West Indies, Australia and India), and one washout against Sri Lanka.
Pakistan team faced all sorts of problems after their comprehensive loss to India in the previous match. The Sarfraz Ahmed-led side have had it all. There were speculations of rumours, body shaming, ranting from former players. The only positive for Pakistan at this stage is that they were in a similar position in 1992 World Cup, their only 50-over World Cup triumph. Pakistan have to win all of their remaining four games in order to keep their hopes of grabbing the semi-final spot. They have won only one game in the tournament, against hosts England. They have faced three losses and one unfortunate washout.
South Africa’s World campaign took a mighty slump with just one win from six games. The Faf du Plessis’ side may be one spot above Pakistan on the points table but they don’t have a chance to make it past the round-robin stage. The situation Proteas side are in only makes them dangerous as they have nothing to lose. We can expect a few experiments in the South African side when they take the field against Pakistan at Lord’s, London.
South Africa have very slim chances of making it to the top four after having lost four out of their six matches so far. With one win and one washout in addition to the four defeats, the Proteas are one spot above Pakistan at number eight.
Playing XI:
Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman, Imam ul Haq, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Haris Sohail, Sarfaraz Ahmed (c), Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Wahab Riaz, Mohammad Amir, Shaheen Shah Afridi

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