England vs Pakistan 2021, 1st ODI: Pakistan's Predicted XI

Updated - 07 Jul 2021, 06:25 PM

Pakistan Cricket Team, T20I Cricket
Pakistan Cricket Team (Image Credit: Twitter)

Pakistan face off England in a limited-overs leg starting from July 8. In 12 days Babar Azam’s men play three ODIs and three T20Is with the first game set to be played in Cardiff. Pakistan have named an 18-member squad with Babar Azam leading the side and Shadab Khan as his deputy. Former Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed is also a part of the squad.

Pakistan recently played against South Africa in a white-ball series earlier this year. They beat the Protean side 2-1 in ODIs and 3-1 in the T20Is. In this article, we take a look at Pakistan’s playing XI for the first ODI.

England vs Pakistan 2021, 1st ODI: Pakistan’s Predicted XI

Sharjeel Khan

Sharjeel Khan
Sharjeel Khan. Image-Twitter

The hard-hitting opener is making a comeback into the Pakistan ODI squad for the first time since 2017. He was also involved in a controversy for which he was kept out out of the side. However, now he is back in the scheme of things for his side and available for the tour. He has played 25 ODIs for his side making his international debut way back in 2013.

Also Read: My Focus Is Returning By The Time IPL Restarts In The UAE: T Natarajan

Fakhar Zaman

Fakhar Zaman 210* [Image Credit- Getty]
Zaman along with Babar Azam are the two best batsmen for Pakistan at the moment in international cricket. He plays all formats for Pakistan and comes into this playing XI as an automatic pick. He scored over 300 runs in the ODI series against South Africa with two hundreds.

Babar Azam

Babar Azam 122 T20I score
Photo Credit: (Twitter)

Pakitan skipper Babar Azam slots in at number four. He has been the best batsman for Pakistan since making his international debut. He is compared to the likes of Virat Kohli, Steve Smith, Kane Williamson, and Joe Root. Pakistan lost when they toured the UK last time under Babar’s captaincy. He would like to set the record straight.

Mohammad Hafeez

Pakistan batsman Mohammad Hafeez
Pakistan batsman Mohammad Hafeez (Credits: Getty)

‘The Professor’ as he is fondly called in the Pakistan cricketing fraternity will bat at number five. He has a wealth of experience in all formats. He will need to bring all the experience into practice in the upcoming series against England.

Imad Wasim

Imad Wasim
Imad Wasim (Image Credit: Twitter)

Designated all-rounder Imad Wasim slots in at number six. He is handy with the bat and bowls decent off-spin with the ball. He was not a part of the squad that played against South Africa recently.

Sarfaraz Ahmed

Sarfaraz Ahmed
Sarfaraz Ahmed. Image-AFP.

Former skipper Sarfaraz should be the first-choice keeper in the ODI series. He is more than a handy batsman lower down the order and can tonk the ball hard in the death overs. It will be interesting to see if Mohammad Rizwan is picked above him for the keeper’s role.

Shadab Khan

Shadab Khan. (Credits: Twitter)

He is Babar Azam’s deputy in the white-ball series. Against South Africa, he was not amongst the wickets n both ODIs and T20Is. Thus he would be aiming to make comeback in the series. He picked up five wickets in three T20Is in the series against England last time around.

Hasan Ali

Hasan Ali
Hasan Ali (Image Credit: Twitter)

Hasan Ali picked up seven wickets in the four T20Is against South Africa. He is one of the best bowlers in world cricket at the moment. Ali would be key in the seaming and the swinging conditions and against an almost second-string England team after three England players and four support staff members have tested positive for COVID-19.

Shaheen Shah Afridi

Shaheen Afridi
Shaheen Afridi (Image Credit: Twitter)

Shaheen will slot in as the second pacer in the playing XI. He was a part of the squad which toured England last time around. He picked five wickets in the Test matches and two in the T20Is. Against South Africa, he picked a total of nine wickets in the ODIs and the T20Is.

Haris Rauf

Haris Rauf
Photo Credit: (Getty Images)

Rauf was a product of the Big Bash League after which he was drafted into the Pakistan national team. He has played five ODIs and 19 T20Is for his side making his debut in international cricket last year. He picked 10 wickets taking the ODIs and T20Is together against South Africa.

Mohammad Nawaz

Mohammad Nawaz
Photo Credit: (Getty Images)

Nawaz sums up the strongest playing XI Pakistan can field against England in the first ODI. With senior players from the England players missing due to COVID, Pakistan have an edge in the first ODI and the entire series.

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Haris Rauf Imad Wasim Mohammad Nawaz Mohammed Hafeez Pakistan national cricket team Pakistan Tour of England 2021 Sharjeel Khan