LAHORE - After the historic victory in the first Twenty20 international, hosts Pakistan are looking for whitewash while Zimbabwe are eager to record a win in the second T20 to draw the T20 series. The Gaddafi Stadium would be once again ready to host the historic T20.

Before going into the second T20, Pakistan team needs to work on many areas. They need to find consistency in the bowling attack and solidity in the middle order, which will help them lift a trophy at home. Wahab Riaz's waywardness will be an area of concern, especially if the third seamer is as expensive as Bilawal Bhatti was in the first match. The presence of openers Mukhtar Ahmed and Ahmed Shehzad along with veteran fellows M Hafeez and Shoaib Malik would boost the team’s batting. Despite a well-deserving victory, there is a dire need to bring improvement in upper and lower middle order and the batsmen should take responsibility and contribute individually in the team’s triumph with sterling their performances.

Besides batting, the bowling too was not impressive in the earlier part of the match, as the bowlers didn’t succeed in getting early wickets and conceded too many runs which allowed Zimbabwe openers to play freely and gather good total. As usual, the fielding was also very pathetic as newly-married wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed also missed a couple of opportunities behind the stumps. 

Match starts at 7:00 PM

Zimbabwe need to build up their confidence and struggle hard to square a series to set themselves up for the ODIs. They did well with the bat putting up a total of 172 which was a very good effort and a lot of the credit must go to their skipper Elton Chigumbura and opener Hamilton Masakadza. Their batting is still solid without the services of one of their super-talented batsman Brendan Taylor who quit the international cricket soon after his team’s ouster from the World Cup 2015. But they still have quite a few players with good international experience who can make their presence felt during the second T20.

Zimbabwe bowling did not penetrate Pakistan batsmen especially the openers. They could have made better efforts to be more effective on that surface. The spinners were taken for a few runs but were the ones who got the wickets. They must utilize their bowling line up well according to the situation and complete their homework how to tackle each and every Pakistan batsman.

As the Zimbabwean captain said they would face difficulty in the first encounter and they would learn from it, and try to their best to produce better results in the second encounter. Now it is time for the guest team to use their players well according to their game plan which could help them inflict a defeat on the hosts, otherwise, a whitewash is very much on the cards.

There will be more runs on offer on a surface that is tailor-made for big totals and that's not the only reason the fielders will be wary. Today (Sunday) is expected to be even hotter than Friday was, with day-time temperatures reaching 44 degrees.

Due to Sunday, a holiday, a large number of spectators are expected to come to witness the second T20 international. They will be expecting high from their team to impose a whitewash but they will be seen cheering for the visitors. This will be the final T20I before the one-day games commence.

SQUADS

PAKISTAN: Shahid Afridi (capt), Mukhtar Ahmed, Ahmed Shehzad, Umar Akmal, M Hafeez, Sarfaraz Khan (wk), Shoaib Malik, M Sami, Bilawal Bhatti, Anwar Ali, Nauman Anwar, Hammad Azam, M Rizwan, Wahab Riaz and Imad Wasim.

ZIMBABWE: Elton Chigumbura (capt), Vusi Sibanda, Hamilton Masakadza, Sikandar Raza, Sean Williams, Craig Ervine, Richmond Mutumbami (wk), Prosper Utseya, Tawanda Mupariwa, Christopher Mpofu, Tinashe Panyangara, Graeme Cremer, Brian Vitori, Chamu Chibhabha, Charles Coventry, Roy Kaia.