Match: England vs. Pakistan, 1st Test
Venue: Old Trafford, Manchester
Date and time: August 5, 2020, at 3.30 PM IST
Preview: After the glorious return of international cricket less than a month ago, the action continues with another country visiting England for a Test and T20 series starting tomorrow. It is the South Asian giant Pakistan, who have had some journey to get to this point. Covid-19 cases in the team extended the quarantine and practice sessions. Overcoming this challenge, the Pakistan team is getting ready to face a well-groomed English side, who already have a few matches under their belt this season. After a shaky start in the Test series against the West Indies, the English team looked formidable with the return of S Broad, the form of B Stokes, and the doggedness of the opening pair. Even though England are the favorites for this series, they should not underestimate the Pakistani team, who can produce magnificent cricket on their day.
Pitch and Weather Conditions: The weather forecast is pretty good except for the possible morning shower on the first day. The Old Trafford pitch provided assistance to the bowlers in both the Tests between England and the West Indies. However, runs were on offer for those who batted patiently, and it will be interesting to see what decision the toss-winning captain makes.
Probable Playing 11 and Key Players
Probable Playing 11 for England: R Burns, D Sibley, Z Crawley, J Root ©, B Stokes, O Pope, J Buttler (wk), C Woakes, J Archer, S Broad, J Anderson
Probable Playing 11 for Pakistan: S Masood, A Ali, Azhar A ©, B Azam, A Shafiq, F Alam, M Rizwan (wk), Y Shah, SS Afridi, N Shah, M Abbas
- S Masood and F Alam looked to be in fine batting form in the recent practice match.
- This series could help establish B Azam as one of the best batsmen in the world.
- D Sibley and R Burns were solid in their recent series against the West Indies.
- B Stokes is a must-have in any fantasy team considering the fine form he is in.
- Captain J Root and Azhar A will be looking to find their form in this series.
- S Broad dominated the West Indies team in the last two Tests and surpassed the 500 wicket mark.
- M Abbas is an underrated Test bowler who can play a big role.
Howzat Dream Team
NOTE: The Howzat dream team above is just a suggestion. You can select your own fantasy cricket team by using your knowledge of cricket. Also, don’t forget to make any necessary changes to your team once the actual playing 11 is announced by each team (15 to 30 minutes before the start of the match) as some players you have selected might not be part of the playing 11.
Select your own team and play fantasy cricket!