The confident Afghan team is about to face fatigued Pakistan in the Super Four of Asia cup 2018 today. Pakistan faced a huge defeat against India by 8 wickets in the league stage. On the other hand, Afghanistan won by 91 runs against Sri Lanka and 136 runs against Bangladesh. They need to face another anticipated context against Pakistan in the super Four stage today at Abu Dhabi.
Ashgar Afghan is facing a stiff groin and Najibullah Zadran might replace him as the skipper. Rashid Khan also might get the opportunity to lead the team in this crucial match. Though Pakistan defeated its fragile opponent Hong Kong in the first game, all their ecstasy was blown off by the defeat against India in the league game. Losing wickets to a part-time spinner like Kedar Jadhav added to the humiliation of Pakistan. The weakness for the Afghanistan team is their batting despite crucial spinners like Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Rashid Khan, and Mohammed Nabi.
On the other hand, the strength for the Pakistanis is their formidable pace attack and some crucial batsmen like Fakhar Ahmed and the skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed. They are trying to make the most out of the opportunity to prove themselves as one of the top5 teams in the ICC ratings. Pakistan will face Afghanistan after a day break after the league match whereas the Afghans will play their second game within 24 hours. This unorganized schedule was frowned at by the experts but the Afghans were confident about their win against the fatigued opponents.
Some of the important takeaways from the team compositions are from Pakistan, Shadab Khan will be rested due to injuries in the game against India and poor form of Mohammed Aamir is a point of worry. Mohammed Nawaz will be one of the crucial spinners for the team.
Coming to Afghanistan, they will enter the ground with the same team. Though they were known as a frail batting line-up, they managed to score 249 and 255 in the previous games.
Talking about head to head competitions, Afghanistan lost the solitary game to Pakistan in Asia Cup 2014. Mohammed Nabi and Rashid Khan share the top position as Afghanistan bowlers with 112 ODI wickets.
Considering important quotes, Mickey Arthur said that “Of course there is [pressure on Amir]. I’d be lying if I sat here and said there wasn’t. I had a really good, long, hard chat with him last night and I thought he came out and bowled really well today.”
Afghan Skipper Ashghar Afghan said that “We want to win, show our abilities and talent. When you want to play cricket just for winning, shows positive intent”
The game begins at 5 pm IST in Abu Dhabi. The climate is expected to be hot with the temperature above 36 degrees.
Sarfraz Ahmed, Mohammed Nawaz, Fakhar Zaman, Imam Ul Haq, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Asif Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Shaheen Afridi, Junaid Khan, Usman Ali, and Hasan Ali.
Ashgar Afghan/ Najibullah Zadran, Mohammed Nabi, Rashid Khan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Ihsanullah, Mohammed Shahad, Rahmat Shah, Hasmatullah Shahidi, Saniullah Shenwari, Gulbadan Naib, and Aftab Alam.