Pakistan and England will face off in a 4 match ODI series beginning today. The series is of critical importance to both teams in terms of rankings as England and Pakistan are ranked 6th and 8th respectively.
Although England will automatically qualify for the World cup in 2019 as they are the hosts but Pakistan need to lift themselves so that when they reach the cutoff time, 30th September 2017, they are amongst the top ranked teams. Pakistan need to win series against better and top ranked sides in order to improve their rankings and this series against England will help them gain some important rating points as they look to crawl their way upwards. Captain of the ODI team Azhar Ali said regarding this matter (Quotes via Sport360.com)
“We need improvement in rankings as well as want to build the team for the future.”
The skipper said that the morale of the team is high after the test series win and considers it as an important factor in the upcoming ODI series.
“We have won Tests so we want to take that morale into the one-day series which is very important,”
On the issue of the selection of Younis khan, Azhar was confident that the legendary batsman will contribute and help in taking the team over the line.
“Younis is a legend so we hope that he contributes and helps us win,”
The first ODI between the two teams will be held at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi and scheduled to begin at 4:00 pm Pakistan standard time.