Host South Africa and Pakistan will lock horns in the three-match T20I series, starting with the game on 2nd April at the SuperSport Park in Centurion. Earlier this year, Pakistan managed to complete a clean sweep over South Africa in the two-match Test series played in Pakistan. Babar Azam-led unit also managed to complete T20I series over South Africa.
The series opener between South Africa and Pakistan will be played at Centurion. After assessing the squads, Pakistan definitely have the players in their lineup to surprise South Africa in the upcoming three-match ODI series.
Let’s take a look at the three Pakistan players who have the ability to change the complexion of the game with bat and ball in the upcoming ODI series against South Africa.
There is no doubt that Babar Azam is premier batsman for Pakistan in white-ball cricket. He is now regarded as one of great players across various formats. After struggling to score runs in the Test series against Pakistan, Babar came back strongly in the Pakistan Super League. He smashed three half-centuries for Karachi Kings before the competition was cancelled due to growing number of coronavirus cases among players representing different franchises.
Therefore, the Pakistan team management will lead from the front with the bat and deliver notable scores in the upcoming three-match ODI series against South Africa. He has represented Pakistan in 77 ODI matches, in which he has scored 3580 runs at an average of 55.93 with twelve centuries and sixteen half-centuries.
Against South Africa, Babar has very good numbers in the 50-over format where he has already scored 295 runs in just seven innings at an staggering average of 59.00 with two half-centuries to his name.
First-choice wicket-keeper has tremendous consistency for Pakistan across all three formats. Since past 12 months, Rizwan has delivered runs for Pakistan in different conditions. The right-handed batsman emerged to the scene as selectors decided to drop experienced Sarfaraz Ahmed, who was struggling with form and fitness issues.
Since New Zealand tour, Mohammad Rizwan form has nothing short of exceptional. Recently, he scored his maiden century in the T20 format against South Africa at Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. Since making his ODI debut, Mohammad Rizwan has accumulated 730 runs at an average of 30.41 with two centuries and three half-centuries.
Rizwan had a fantastic outing against South Africa in the Test and ODI series played in Pakistan. The 28-year old will be looking to continue his purple with the bat in the upcoming one-day series against South Africa.
Shaheen Shah Afridi
Since making his debut, Shaheen Shah Afridi has been the premier bowler for Pakistan across all three formats. Since Jan 2019, Shaheen has topped the bowling charts for Pakistan in the limited-overs cricket. In 16 matches, Afridi has claimed 32 wickets at an average of 23.28 with two five-fors and two five-wicket hauls.
In the recently postponed PSL, Left-arm quick showed excellent form and claimed nine wickets in four innings at an economy rate of 7.06. Given his excellent performances for Pakistan in the past 12 months, Shaheen will be looking to make an impact with the new-ball.
Shaheen will take heart from the fact they have put in decent numbers for Pakistan in the previous white-ball tour of South Africa. The 20-year old will be looking to continue his rich vein of form in the forthcoming one-day series.