Pakistan vs Sri Lanka | Asia Cup | Dhaka | 15/3/12 | 1st Innings

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Half an hour till the toss, in the meantime read the preview :)

Top-heavy Sri Lanka take on sedate Pakistan

Abhishek Purohit


Match facts

March 15, 2012
Start time 1400 (0800 GMT)

143450.2.jpg

Pakistan cannot depend on their bowlers to bail them out each time the batting misfires
© Associated Press​



Big Picture

The best and worst of Pakistan's unpredictability were on display against Bangladesh in the Asia Cup opener on Sunday. The batting was a rollercoaster ride from a high of 135 for 1, a low of 198 for 7 and a surge to 262 for 8. Pakistan then saw the opposition eyeing a win at 224 for 5, before Umar Gul and Saeed Ajmal averted what would have been an embarrassing loss with a burst of 5 for 17. The game was Bangladesh's to lose, and they went ahead and lost it. Sri Lanka will not be so helpful to Pakistan.

Pakistan's ODI batting has recently been shaky against fast bowling even in Asia, one of the main reasons for their 0-4 whitewash against England in the UAE. On Sunday, the hard work done by Mohammad Hafeez and Nasir Jamshed was undone by Pakistan losing three wickets - two of them to hooks off short deliveries - in three overs to Shahadat Hossain.

Their new-found ability under Misbah-ul-Haq to absorb blows and build steadily has worked superbly in Tests; ODIs on the subcontinent have unfortunately degenerated into hitting bouts decided by whose batsmen are more powerful. Back in conditions which their batsmen love, India outgunned Sri Lanka on Tuesday.

Pakistan's batting looks thinner when compared to the two other Asian heavyweights, and they cannot depend on their bowlers to bail them out each time the batting misfires. Certainly not in these conditions.

Sri Lanka's worry is not that they lack the firepower in their batting; the issue at the moment is that it is unevenly distributed, with Tillakaratne Dilshan and Mahela Jayawardene opening and Kumar Sangakkara coming in at No. 3. While Jayawardene, batting with much more freedom at the top, has earned the right to continue to open, Sri Lanka need one of their three senior batsmen to drop down the order to guide the inexperience of Dinesh Chandimal and Lahiru Thirimanne. The case for that has become stronger with the exit of Angelo Mathews from the tournament.

Form guide

Pakistan WLLLL
Sri Lanka LLWLW

In the spotlight

Sri Lanka's fast bowlers allowed India to convert a good total into a challenging one with a variety of full tosses at the death and MS Dhoni and Suresh Raina plundered 78 runs in 43 balls. The bowlers kept going for the yorkers and more often than not, kept missing the blockhole. The short delivery wasn't tried much. Sri Lanka need an improved performance from them tomorrow; another loss in this short tournament could end their chances of making the final.

Mohammad Hafeez was the Man of the Match against Bangladesh for his 89 in an opening stand of 135 and two important wickets. Before that, the last time Hafeez made a fifty was also the last time Pakistan had had a century opening partnership, in November 2011. This shows how important Hafeez's contribution has become, and will be tomorrow, for this Pakistan side.

Pitch and conditions

Chasing is not proving to be that difficult in Bangladesh, though the results of the first two matches don't show it. MS Dhoni said on Tuesday that the Shere Bangla Stadium had been a difficult ground to defend against Sri Lanka with the fast outfield and some dew making batting second relatively easier. But with two sides now having lost after choosing to field, it will be a difficult choice at the toss tomorrow for the winning captain.

Teams

Mathews' departure from Bangladesh with a calf injury is a severe blow for Sri Lanka. They missed his calm head during the chase when wickets fell in a heap during the batting Powerplay. With Thisara Perera still uncertain, Sri Lanka's lower middle order does not inspire confidence.

Lasith Malinga's absence from the XI against India was a major talking point. Malinga bowled and batted in the nets today and should come in for Suranga Lakmal.

Sri Lanka (likely): 1 Mahela Jayawardene (capt), 2 Tillakaratne Dilshan, 3 Dinesh Chandimal, 4 Kumar Sangakkara (wk), 5 Lahiru Thirimanne, 6 Upul Tharanga, 7 Chamara Kapugedera, 8 Farveez Maharoof, 9 Nuwan Kulasekara, 10 Seekkuge Prasanna, 11 Lasith Malinga

Pakistan (likely): 1 Mohammad Hafeez, 2 Nasir Jamshed, 3 Younis Khan 4 Umar Akmal, 5 Misbah-ul-Haq (capt), 6 Asad Shafiq, 7 Shahid Afridi, 8 Sarfraz Ahmed (wk), 9 Umar Gul, 10 Saeed Ajmal, 11 Aizaz Cheema

Stats and trivia

Pakistan have beaten Sri Lanka 75 times in ODIs. Only Australia, with 85 wins over New Zealand, have more wins against a particular opponent

Shahid Afridi needs one more five-wicket haul to become the bowler with the most five-fors in ODIs in the subcontinent. Presently, he is level with Waqar Younis on seven five-wicket hauls

Quotes

"[If] we win, we are more or less through. The preparation has been okay, a couple of days to lead up to the second match. We had an opportunity to look at the opponent yesterday."

Pakistan coach Dav Whatmore


© ESPN EMEA Ltd.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/asia-cup-2012/content/story/557315.html

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Its a must win game for SL, they won't be easy to beat. As for Pakistan, its a big game, if they win this, they are almost qualified for the final, don't wanna build up pressure to the Sunday's game vs India
 
If we win toss, should we bat or bowl?

Batting second does seem easier for normal teams, but for us chasing is like walking on lava.

What do PP'ers think?
 
Pakistan should always look to bat first. We can't chase in excess of 240 and 240 is a normal score in this part of the world.
 
SL made 254 while chasing a couple of days ago, granted that it was off Indian bowlers, but pitch does seem to ease at night.
 
Gavaskar says, pitch is so flat that he wishes he was still playing...lol
 
Waqar Younis says both teams who chased and lost, gave it away. 300 on this pitch is not a hard chase.
 
Headlines of cricinfo at the end of this match, Bowlers give sri lanka important win
 
Mahela Jayawardene: "Runs on the board will be a good thing. It is still an open tournament. We have got to win. We need to tighten up in a few areas. Lasith comes back, Kapugedera is left out. We are going in with five bowlers."


Misbah-ul-Haq: "We have added Hammad Azam who will give us more options with medium pace, he is basically a batsman. We have to pick ourselves as a batting unit."
 
Misbah didn't mention anything else so I guess Wahab is left to rot on the bench :facepalm:
 
Come on Hammad, you will have to perform really really well for Misbah to play you more than one match..
 
Pakistan team
Mohammad Hafeez, Nasir Jamshed, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq*, Umar Akmal, Hammad Azam, Shahid Afridi, Sarfraz Ahmed†, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal, Aizaz Cheema
Sri Lanka team
TM Dilshan, DPMD Jayawardene*, KC Sangakkara†, LD Chandimal, WU Tharanga, HDRL Thirimanne, KMDN Kulasekara, MF Maharoof, S Prasanna, SL Malinga, RAS Lakmal
 
Pakistan team
Mohammad Hafeez, Nasir Jamshed, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq*, Umar Akmal, Hammad Azam, Shahid Afridi, Sarfraz Ahmed†, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal, Aizaz Cheema
 
Pakistan (Playing XI): Mohammad Hafeez, Nasir Jamshed, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq(c), Umar Akmal, Hammad Azam, Shahid Afridi, Sarfraz Ahmed(w), Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal, Aizaz Cheema

Sri Lanka (Playing XI): Mahela Jayawardene(c), Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara(w), Dinesh Chandimal, Lahiru Thirimanne, Upul Tharanga, Farveez Maharoof, Nuwan Kulasekara, Seekkuge Prasanna, Lasith Malinga, Suranga Lakmal
 
Pathetic. I don't know why but Pakistan is continuously losing toss. :facepalm:

Match nahi to toss to jeet lo misbah. :(
 
Line up:

Mohammad Hafeez, Nasir Jamshed, Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq*, Umar Akmal, Hammad Azam, Shahid Afridi, Sarfraz Ahmed†, Umar Gul, Saeed Ajmal, Aizaz Cheema



(according to Cricinfo)
 
Younis Khan it's toooooo much now. Plssss leave the team and let Shafik play at number 3.
 
Thats height of hypocrisy

Why the hell would you drop shafiq?

why the hell not Younus Khan.. who has nothing to give to the team except a flashy smile...

Pakistani selectors have messed it up

At least Shafiq rotated the strike and could score runs....
 
Safe to say we lose? Us chasing Hafeez, Younis, Misbah.....
 
have a feeling Younis will fire today, usually does just when just about everybody questions his place in the team
 
Might support SL today, give us an epic Phainta
 
Thats height of hypocrisy

Why the hell would you drop shafiq?

why the hell not Younus Khan.. who has nothing to give to the team except a flashy smile...

Pakistani selectors have messed it up

At least Shafiq rotated the strike and could score runs....

Agreed.

SHould have been Hammad for YK.

But at least Hammad gets a game. An Misbah just talked about his bowling being an option. SO, I hope he gets a bowl as well
 
Interesting. High hopes from Hammad on this forum it seems. Lets see how he performs.
 
omgggggggggggg, hammmad is playing and that too at number 6 god bless misbah for coming to his sences
 
i think its wise to left out asad for hammad younas gets an edge because he can play spin well and it seems more balance side today ... :)
 
lol shafiq dropped. Ridiculous. The guy showed improvement in that last ODI against England.

Don't know why the PCB are so scared to drop Younis. Maybe they fear the fan reaction towards the dropping of a guy they mistreated in the past. People will accuse the PCB of having a vendetta against YK.

Oh and Cheema picked yet again. So disappointed Riaz isn't in the team.
 
i think its wise to left out asad for hammad younas gets an edge because he can play spin well and it seems more balance side today ... :)

The youth of Pakistan need time out in middle...

Not old horses who are past their prime and have nothing more to offer come 2015 World Cup
 
It's funny how some of you actually expect Younis to be dropped, he's a 'senior player', he can't possibly be 'dropped' unless he's in woeful form. Reality is, with Pakistan and basically even India and Sri Lanka, it's the younger players who face the chop to accommodate another player, so with that idea clearly it had to be Shafiq, who had to go if Hammad was to come in, unfortunately, it appears Misbah doesn't rate Hammad to highly, definetly not as a bowler.
 
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