The Pakistan cricket team is counting on a change in format and players to overcome a resurgent Sri Lanka in the five-match one-day series starting in Dubai from Friday.
The green shirts were upset 2-0 in the preceding Test series but they are now hoping to change their fortunes and carry the limited over form which helped them win the eight-nation Champions Trophy held in England in June this year.
The side only have skipper Sarfraz Ahmed, batsmen Haris Sohail and Babar Azam and fast bowler Hasan Ali from the Test series, while experienced all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez and opener Ahmed Shahzad amongst the 11 who joined the squad.
Ahmed feels the pressure of losing his first Test series but promised a better performance in the limited over matches. “Obviously, when you have a first Test series as captain, and you lose it, pressure will be there,” said Ahmed who played a match winning 61 not out against Sri Lanka in the Champions Trophy group match. “But we will try and get out of that. Our one-day team is balanced and our record is very good. We will have some senior players returning and I hope we’ll play better cricket,” he added.
Pakistan also have a young crop of fast emerging players in opener Fakhar Zaman — who hit a century in the Champions Trophy final against India — leg-spinner Shadab Khan, all-rounders Imad Wasim and Faheem Ashraf, and pacers Rumman Raees, Junaid Khan and Usman Shinwari.
Teams Pakistan: Sarfraz Ahmed (capt), Ahmed Shehzad, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Imad Wasim, Shahdab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Usman Shinwari, Ruman Raees, Junaid Khan, Haris Sohail, Imam-ul-Haq
Sri Lanka: Upul Tharanga (capt), Dinesh Chandimal, Niroshan Dickwella,Lahiru Thirimanne, Kusal Mendis, Milinda Siriwardana, Chamara Kapugedara, Thisara Perera, Seekuge Prasanna, Nuwan Pradeep, Suranga Lakmal, Dushmantha Chameera, Vishwa Fernando, Akila Dananjaya, Jeffrey Vandersay.—Agencies