South Africa will face off against Pakistan in the first T20 match of South Africa’s tour of Pakistan. Both teams will want to win this game, though making a cricket prediction for this game will be quite tough.
Pakistan come into the T20 series after clean sweeping the Porteas in the Tests 2-0. Babar Azam will want to simply carry forward the confidence. It should be a great cricket match. The hosts carry a full strength squad with Babar Azam– who missed the New Zealand series – leading the team. The in-form Hasan Ali has been recalled in the squad for the shortest format. Asif Ali will also want to make a strong impact as four uncapped players namely left-arm spinner Zafar Gohar, all-rounder Danish Aziz, leg-spinner Zahid Mehmood and bowling all-rounder Amad Butt have joined the squad.
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Babar Azam (c), Aamer Yamin, Amad Butt, Asif Ali, Danish Aziz, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Afridi, Usman Qadir, Zafar Gohar, Zahid Mehmood, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed.
No Quinton De Kock, Faf du Plessis, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi and Rassie van der Dussen means the South African armband for the T20 series will be worn by Heinrich Klaasen. The wicketkeeper missed the series against England when he tested positive for COVID-19, but the captaincy comes as an opportunity to make a solid statement.
However, pundits and selectors will also closely watch the likes of George Linde, Junior Dala and Okuhle Cele, as the three embark on a journey to hold relatively permanent seats in the team bus.
South Africa Squad
Heinrich Klaasen (captain), Nandre Burger, Okuhle Cele, Junior Dala, Bjorn Fortuin, Reeza Hendricks, George Linde, Janneman Malan, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Ryan Rickleton, Tabraiz Shamsi, Lutho Sipamla, Jon-Jon Smuts, Jacques Snyman, Glenton Stuurman, Pite van Biljon.
Pakistan and South Africa have faced each other 14 times in T20 matches. Pakistan have won six matches and the Porteas have emerged victorious in eight T20Is.
All the three matches of the series will be played at teh Gaddafi, that means the first match will set the tone for both the teams. While Pakistan have not lost a T20 game at home for the last six matches and full strength squad stands strong on their case, Klaasen and company also come with some exciting talent. However – at least on paper – Pakistan are a clear winner.
Date and Time:
February 11 2021 (Thursday)
Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
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