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ODI World Cup 2023: Netherlands vs Pakistan; Team news, pitch report, probable playing XIs and more

The Dutch cricket team has made a comeback on the international stage, securing a spot in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. Their remarkable journey through the World Cup Qualifiers has led them to face the formidable Pakistan team in a much-anticipated clash in Hyderabad.

cricket ODI World Cup 2023: Netherlands vs Pakistan; Team news, pitch report, probable playing XIs and more osf
First Published Oct 5, 2023, 11:05 PM IST

The Dutch cricket team has landed in Kerala, not in pursuit of colonial ambitions, but with a fervent desire to compete in the World Cup! Their remarkable and determined performances during the World Cup Qualifiers have earned Netherlands a spot among the prestigious 10 teams participating in this marquee event. The Orange Army is now gearing up to take on the formidable challenge posed by Pakistan at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad.

In the opening game of the tournament in Ahmedabad, we witnessed a batting masterclass courtesy of New Zealand's left-handed duo, Devon Conway and Rachin Ravindra. They effortlessly dismantled the defending champions, turning the match into a display of their impeccable stroke-play. During the warm-up fixtures in Hyderabad, the batsmen relished the conditions, and we can expect more of the same when Pakistan squares off against Netherlands in the second match of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023.

While concerns about Pakistan's bowling lineup are evident, with the absence of Naseem Shah being a notable issue, the team also faces challenges in the form of opener Fakhar Zaman, who has been struggling with his confidence. While Abdullah Shafique has shown promise, it's clear that Saud Shakeel's left-handed prowess might be preferred over the out-of-form all-rounder Agha Salman.

Captain Babar Azam, wicket-keeper Mohammad Rizwan, and Imam-ul-Haq have been consistent with the bat for Pakistan. Iftikhar Ahmed has also brought an attacking dimension to the middle order. However, vice-captain Shadab Khan has struggled both with bat and ball, impacting Pakistan's performance in the middle overs. Introducing Shakeel into the middle order could provide a much-needed boost to the batting, complementing all-rounder Mohammad Nawaz's role as a left-arm spinner.

In the fast bowling department, Shaheen Shah Afridi will lead the charge, supported by Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, and Mohammad Wasim Jr. While Usama Mir had a strong season in England's domestic tournaments, Pakistan is likely to stick with the experienced leg-spinner Shadab.

Pakistan's warm-up games didn't go as planned, resulting in losses to both New Zealand and Australia at the same venue. The primary reason for these defeats was their bowling unit's inability to contain the opposition, with both New Zealand and Australia posting scores well in excess of 340. As is often the case, Pakistan's batting heavily relies on the trio of Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan, and Iftikhar Ahmed, with Saud Shakeel and Mohammad Nawaz making valuable contributions. However, to secure victory in major tournaments like the World Cup, a strong and reliable bowling unit is imperative, and Pakistan will be looking to address these concerns as the competition progresses.

Also Read: ODI World Cup 2023: Conway and Ravindra's heroics power New Zealand to crushing 9-wicket victory over England

Date and Time: Friday, October 6, 2023, 2:00 PM IST

Venue: ICC Men's World Cup 2023, Match 2, Pakistan vs. Netherlands, Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad

Probable XI for Pakistan: Fakhar Zaman, Imam ul Haq, Babar Azam (c), Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Agha Salman, Iftikhar Ahmed, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf

Probable XI for Netherlands: Vikramjeet Singh, Max O'Dowd, Wesley Baressi, Bas de Leede, Teja Nidamanuru/Colin Ackermann, Scott Edwards (c, wk), Logan van Beek, Saqib Zulfiqar, Roelof van der Merwe, Paul van Meerkeren, Aryan Dutt

Pitch Report: The pitch at Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium promises to be a batting paradise, offering opportunities for pacers to make their mark. Chasing has been the preferred strategy, adding an extra layer of excitement to the encounter.

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