Pakistan aim to bounce back from MCG heart-break



In the aftermath of two derbies, two different moods. Zimbabwe upset with having had to carry on in the conditions they did against South Africa, but no doubt relieved to have come away with a point. Pakistan, meanwhile, anguished at seeing two points slip away in that wild last over at the MCG against India.

In other times, that kind of loss might have felled other Pakistan sides, but there’s something more settled about this one. They may rue not picking a fourth pacer at the MCG, but Mohammad Nawaz was not far from winning it: a little luck with the deflection off the stumps on the free-hit, a little fortune with that no-ball call, and they’re sitting pretty now. In the dressing room after the game, Babar Azam was not letting heads fall, telling Nawaz he was still his match-winner. Imperfect they may be, but they’re more together than most Pakistan sides of modern vintage.

And at the risk of stating the obvious, they are also still a pretty good T20I side. They have the second highest number of wins and the third best win-loss ratio among Full Members since the last T20 World Cup. They will also take some heart from their middle order managing a competitive total after a rare joint failure of Babar and Mohammad Rizwan. They are also unlikely to come across conditions as tough for batting as they were at the MCG.—Agencies


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