Harare - Following a thrilling 13-run win over in the 1st T20 International (T20I), Pakistan would look to complete a clean sweep, when they take on minnows Zimbabwe in the second and final T20I at the Harare Sports Club (HSC) today (Tuesday).
Pakistan, who are ranked second in the ICC T20I Rankings, would definitely look to finish on top in this game in order to better their chances of finishing at No.1 by overtaking Sri Lanka, who are the current T20 World champions.
Considering that the 1st T20I on Sunday was once again a classic display of cricket form the Pakistan team and once again proved why have been dominant in the shortest format of late. In their batting, it was Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Rizwan, who played an elegant knock of 35 and 33, respectively in order to help Pakistan post a competitive total and prevent them from a further collapse, which could have been disastrous. Looking at the bowling attack, it was Imad Wasim’s deadly spinning spell that helped him claim four victims in the Zimbabwe’s top batting-order and earned him the Man of the Match award.

Match starts at 4:00 PM
Zimbabwe were off to a pretty good start, with the ball as Chamu Chibhabha’s excellent opening spell sent Pakistan wondering on how to tackle his bowling attack. Chibhabha and his fellow pacers were causing some trouble. However, Zimbabwe’s batting order indeed disappointed them, with some unfortunate run-outs adding to their misery. Although Hamilton Masakadza and Elton Chigumbura fought with a steady knock of 25 and 31, respectively, the failure of other batsmen to shine cost them the match eventually.
Considering the second T20I at Harare, the pitch is going to favour the batsmen, justlike it did in the first match. A bit of application can fetch the batsmen better results. Toss would definitely be crucial as the side winning it will look to bat first. Thus, considering the team combination, both the teams would prefer to go with a strong batting order, mostly consisting of six specialist batsman, or even seven. As for Pakistan, Malik and Rizwan are most likely to retain their place along with Wasim. There might be a big question mark on the selection of Mukhtar Ahmed, Sohaib Maqsood and Imran Khan Jr as their poor performance could pave way for Mohammad Hafeez and Mohammad Irfan. However, Pakistan are most likely to go in with an unchanged squad as they would not want to disturb their winning combination, and tasking a call on the performance of the players based on just a game would not be a fair call.
As for Zimbabwe, they indeed have a star-studded team; however, their inability to be consistent could definitely see them rotating the squad in order to extract the all important win in order to square the series. Craig Ervine, Richmond Mutumbami and Prosper Utseya are the men who could well miss out from Tuesday’s game and give others a chance, with likes of Chris Mpofu, John Nyumbu and Malcolm Waller could make their way into the squad.
PAKISTAN: Shahid Afridi (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Mukhtar Ahmed, Ahmed Shehzad, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Umar Akmal, Sohail Tanvir, Wahab Riaz, Imran Khan jr, Mohammad Irfan, Sohaib Maqsood, Bilal Asif, Imad Wasim, Aamer Yamin.
ZIMBABWE: Elton Chigumbura (c), Richmond Mutumbami (wk), Hamilton Masakadza, Chamu Chibhabha, Craig Ervine, Sean Williams, Sikandar Raza, Malcolm Waller, Graeme Cremer, Tinashe Panyangara, Neville Madziva, Chris Mpofu, Taurai Muzarabani, John Nyumbu, Prosper Utseya, Luke Jongwe.