After back to back defeats in the first two games of five-match one-day international series, Pakistan look to bounce back in the third fixture at Abu Dhabi today.
Taking no more risks, Pakistan has made two changes in today’s game, paceman Usman Shinwari will replace Faheem Ashraf – rested from the final three matches – while another left-arm paceman Junaid Khan will come in place of Mohammad Abbas.
Head coach Mickey Arthur also confirmed there will be no more debuts in the remaining of the series meaning opener Abid Ali and middle-order batsman Saad Ali will have to wait.
“We always get castigated for not trying new players and now we are getting castigated for giving opportunities to new players. I think people need to understand that we are a very passionate team,” said the coach. “Every time we go on to the field, we go there to win for Pakistan.”
Although the batsmen displayed good batting performances, scoring 280 and 284 on a slow wicket, with Haris Sohail and Mohammad Rizwan made individual centuries but the bowlers have failed to jolt Australia’s batting line, losing only two wickets on each occasion.
On the other hand, Kangaroos are on a roll after they crushed India in their home ground by 3-2 and are on trot of five successive ODI victories with the two wins in Sharjah.
Australia have been dented by the injury of their paceman, Jhye Richardson, who dislocated his shoulder while fielding in the second ODI and is struggling for fitness for the upcoming World Cup 2019 in England.
Meanwhile, fast bowler Pat Cummins seems ready to get back in the side after having two-ODI break.
“I think I’m back available, I’m going to have a bowl today,” Cummins said on Tuesday. “It was nice to have a two-game break. Jhye is not around so we need another bowler in there.”
If Australia wins today, they will also secure the series with two games remaining.
Pakistan: Shoaib Malik (captain), Shan Masood, Imam-ul-Haq, Haris Sohail, Faheem Ashraf, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Rizwan, Abid Ali, Saad Ali, Umar Akmal, Junaid Khan, Yasir Shah, Usman Shinwari, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Abbas and Mohammad Hasnain
Australia: Aaron Finch (captain), Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscomb, Glenn Maxwell, Ashton Turner, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Kane Richardson, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Lyon, Adam Zampa