West Indies v Pakistan, 1st T20, St Vincent

Weary West Indies bank on T20 form

The Preview by Kanishkaa Balachandran

July 26, 2013

Comments: 44 | Text size: A | A

Match facts

Saturday, July 27, 2013
Start time 1400 local (1800 GMT)


Darren Sammy made a quick 29 off 18 balls, West Indies v Pakistan, 5th ODI, St Lucia, July 24, 2013
West Indies have not lost a single Twenty20 since winning the World T20 last year © WICB Media
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Big Picture

In what has been a disappointing home season for West Indies, with the twin failures in the tri-series and a 3-1 defeat in the one-day series to Pakistan, the hosts have a chance to salvage pride in a format that hasn't let them down in recent months - Twenty20. Since winning the World T20 in Sri Lanka last year, West Indies have not dropped a single game, and with history on their side, nothing less than a 2-0 triumph will be enough to bring some cheer to their fans as the islands prepare for a brace of T20s in the form of the Caribbean Premier League, which gets underway two days after the two back-to-back games against Pakistan.

Save for series victories against unfancied Zimbabwe at home, West Indies have been a let down against better opposition, starting from the Champions Trophy. The expectations were raised after winning a world title last year and winning six consecutive Tests (albeit against the weaker sides). Fatigue was one of the factors attributed to their slump, with several key batsmen like Chris Gayle, Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo taking active part in the IPL and other leagues, without much rest between series. It has shown in the performances in at least two of the three players and there is very little time to turn the corner. It was a forgettable season for another reason: the decision to sacrifice Tests for more one-dayers for monetary reasons and accommodating the CPL is unpalatable for the cricket purist. It appears that T20s are the flavour of the season, starting Saturday.

Not too long ago, Pakistan had endured a similar slump, bowing out of the Champions Trophy without a win. Commonsense prevailed when the selectors chose not to make the captain the scapegoat and instead recalled impact players like Shahid Afridi and Umar Akmal, who made vital contributions in the one-dayers. The batsmen had a lot to answer for after the debacle in England and in testing batting conditions in the West Indies, there was an improvement, at least in the last three games. Misbah-ul-Haq, much ridiculed for his conservative approach to batting which sometimes drastically slows down the innings, was the pivot around which the batting revolved. His one-day numbers in 2013 speak for themselves, but he is not around for the T20s. Can Pakistan be just as effective without him?

Form guide

West Indies WWWWW (most recent first, last five completed matches)
Pakistan WLWLW

In the spotlight

It has been a trying few months for Dwayne Bravo, who hasn't had the best start to full-time captaincy, though he is in charge only for one-dayers. His batting in the final overs has been effective, contributing two quick 40s in recent matches, but the same can't be said about his bowling at the death. West Indies have been guilty of leaking too many and in this case the captain has been just as bad, if not worse, than the rest. Still, it didn't deter Bravo from bringing himself on, as West Indies looked for dot balls and wickets in the last two one-dayers. Now under Darren Sammy's leadership, it remains to be seen if he will bowl Bravo out early or risk him in the slog overs.

Umar Akmal belongs to the breed of talented cricketers who infuriate more than delight. Recalled for this tour, playing as a wicketkeeper-batsman, Akmal's batting form has been encouraging. His unbeaten 40 in the third one-dayer provided the innings a boost after Misbah's stonewalling; his unbeaten 29 in the fourth helped Pakistan sail home in a truncated chase and his 28-ball 37 helped Pakistan edge closer in the final game, though he couldn't finish it off. Nevertheless, it was a refreshing comeback.

Team news

Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels missed West Indies' last T20 series, against Zimbabwe, but both should take their places here. West Indies have the option of playing two spinners, with Samuel Badree in the squad.

West Indies (probable) 1 Chris Gayle, 2 Johnson Charles (wk), 3 Darren Bravo, 4 Marlon Samuels, 5 Lendl Simmons, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Dwayne Bravo, 8 Darren Sammy (capt), 9 Sunil Narine, 10 Tino Best, 11 Shannon Gabriel/Samuel Badree

For Pakistan, Sohail Tanvir, Zulfiqar Babar and Hammad Azam have flown in for the T20s.

Pakistan (probable) 1 Nasir Jamshed, 2 Ahmed Shehzad, 3 Mohammad Hafeez (capt), 4 Umar Akmal (wk), 5 Haris Sohail/ Hammad Azam, 6 Shahid Afridi, 7 Sohail Tanvir, 8 Saeed Ajmal, 9 Junaid Khan, 10 Wahab Riaz, 11 Mohammad Irfan

Stats and trivia

  • St Vincent will be hosting its first ever T20 international
  • Remarkably, Pakistan and West Indies have played only one T20 against each other overall. West Indies won that encounter two years ago

Quotes

"We are World T20 champions; this is the format I think we are best at and we have to show why at St Vincent."
Darren Sammy, talks up West Indies' chances

Kanishkaa Balachandran is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: Kanishkaa Balachandran

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 17:03 GMT)

Pakistan will win

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 15:40 GMT)

When will the match start in Pakistani time???

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 15:26 GMT)

If Pakistan got rid of Gayle on time Dan hav every chance of winning

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 15:05 GMT)

let the game began !

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 14:29 GMT)

I thing pakistan is much better then wi

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 11:16 GMT)

Almost same Wl team is likely to play. With Gayle out of form it won't be a walk in the park for them. 2ndly. Pak. bowling attk is much improved

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 7:20 GMT)

west indies r looking favourite at the moment bur Pakistan cant. be under rated.in this formst. We r really gud in this format of the game.Pakistan has the highest win % in t 20 s. So lets hope for the best

Posted by   on (July 27, 2013, 5:30 GMT)

in T20 Still I believe WI has a strong team

Posted by IdreesAhmed95 on (July 27, 2013, 0:04 GMT)

Once Umar Gul gets back to the Pakistani line up, it will be a VERY good squad. I think our batting is still our weakness because our openers always puts pressure on our middle order - I'm not sure when was the last time our openers had a 100 run partnership in ODIs, let alone T20, so therefore definitely opening must be strong or we will only get a score of 140. In T20 though, I think our team should be: Nasir, Shehzad, Hafeez, U Akmal, Haris, Azam, Afridi, Ajmal, J Khan, Tanvir, Irfan. I liked Tanvir when we didn't have Irfan because he seemed to do a decent job, however, I'd have preferred someone younger like Raza Hassan. I'm not sure about our youngsters but I'd like to see them have a bat hence why Azam + Haris, even Amin should play. I hope to see all these people in the 2 T20s for the future. It will be interesting to see how this goes because both teams like T20, and Hafeez is a better captain than Misbah. Good luck Pakistan :)

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 23:59 GMT)

Drop Wahab, Hamad Azam at 7. Then good line up. Why have 4 left arm quicks plus 3 spinners? I think Umar Amin's great on domestic circuit but he has failed on the intl stage, I don't think Intl cricket is for him. Psychological barriers possibly...

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 22:54 GMT)

I hope Wahab wouldn't be preferred for his batting abilities..

Playing XI should be 1 Nasir Jamshed, 2 Ahmed Shehzad, 3 Mohammad Hafeez (capt), 4 Umar Akmal (wk), 5 Umar Amin, 6 Shahid Afridi, 7 Hammad Azam, 8 Sohail Tanvir,9 Saeed Ajmal, 10 Junaid Khan, 10 Mohammad Irfan

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 21:38 GMT)

Pak XI : Ahmed, Nasir, Afridi , Haris Sohail, Umer akmal , Hafeez, Hammad , AJmal , Tanveer, Junaid, Irfan, Tanveer, Junaid, Irfan Can Bowl 10 Overs. Ajmal , Afridi , Hafeez , 10 overs. So if any of these 6 gets more score, we can give chance to Hammad azam , as he id medium pacer. Best t20 Combination Pak have at the moment..

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 21:26 GMT)

Gonna be a good contest, cant wait for the series to start

Posted by Sports4Youth on (July 26, 2013, 21:11 GMT)

I just hope that Hafeez does not start with WAHAB RIAZ OR SOHAIL TANVIR.

Posted by Sports4Youth on (July 26, 2013, 21:08 GMT)

According to UMAR AMIN & HAMMAD AZAM should be in the team primarily for their batting. We already have two very good all-rounders in AFRIDI & HAFEEZ. We dont need too many all-rounders, otherwise we will see collapses like they happened in the ODI's. JUNAID-IRFAN-AJMAL-HAFEEZ-AFRIDI this is a suffiently good bowling option. Hammad & U.Amin can roll over their arms for 1 or 2 overs for a change, but that should not be the plan.

Threre is no place for W.Riaz or S.Tanvir. We dont anymore bowling all-rounders or bowlers who can bat a bit (Riaz).

1.Jamshed, 2.Shehzad, 3.H.Sohail, 4.U.Akmal, 5.Hafeez, 6.U.Amin, 7.Hammad, 8.Afridi, 9.Junaid, 10.Ajmal, 11.Irfan - This is a pretty solid team.

.

Posted by warneneverchuck on (July 26, 2013, 20:21 GMT)

Both teams play good only in this format so it will be a good contest

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 20:01 GMT)

Pak XI shud be 1-Shehzad, 2-Nasir, 3-Hafeez, 4-Akmal, 5-Haris/Amin, 6-Afridi, 7-Azam, 8-Tanveer, 9-Ajmal, 10-Junaid, 11-Irfan.

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 19:52 GMT)

My Guess/Prediction:- Pak Team: Nasir, Shahzad, Hafeez, Umar, Harris, Hammad, Afridi, Ajmal, Asad/Tanvir, Junaid, Irfan Winner: Pakistan

Posted by bingster on (July 26, 2013, 19:47 GMT)

Why do we have umer amin in the t20 squad i mean we could have better options in the 15..According to me the playing 11 should be 1.Shahzad 2.Jamshed 3.Haris Sohail 4.Umer Akmal 5.Hafeez 6.Afridi 7.Hammad Azam 8.Sohail tanvir 9.Saeed Ajmal 10.Junaid Khan 11.Irfan..For me hafeez should bat at number 5 and haris sohail at 3 ..

Posted by SamWintson92 on (July 26, 2013, 19:01 GMT)

My team for 1st T20I: WI XI: 1 Gayle 2 Charles (WK) 3 Darren Bravo 4 Samuels 5 Simmons 6 Pollard 7 Dwayne Bravo 8 Sammy (C) 9 Narine 10 Best 11 Badree. PAK XI: 1 Shehzad 2 Jamshed 3 Hafeez (C) 4 U Akmal (WK) 5 Harris 6 Afridi 7 Hammad 8 Wahab 9 Ajmal 10 Junaid 11 Irfan.

Posted by jahbert58 on (July 26, 2013, 18:32 GMT)

So where is all this talent they keep talking about in the WI. with the exception of 1 or 2 changes in the test matches WI team make up consisted of the same players in all formats. know there lays the problem. It's safe to say the problem stems from the top. From there resent success in the short format the administrators interested only in T20 cricket base on the player that are picked to represent the West Indies.

Posted by kunwar94 on (July 26, 2013, 18:01 GMT)

My ideal playing XI of PAK: 1)Ahmed 2)Nasir 3)Hafeez 4)Akmal 5)Haris 6)Hammad 7)Afridi 8)Tanvir 9)Ajmal 10) Junaid 11) Irfan BENCH: Amin, Wahab, Asad, Zulfiqar

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 17:55 GMT)

or may be

Nasir , ahmed, hafeez, umar akmal

Haris sohail, hammad azam

afridi, ajmal, irfan, junaid,

they can have wahab or sohail but they can also include umar amin. hammad is also an ok bowler and can not do more wrong than wahab.

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 17:51 GMT)

well i think WI have great chance, they may not be in form but a good captain sammy is there and t20 can be won by little cameos and WI have power hitters in their line up who can do that.

For pakistan , i think they will go wth haris sohail but i do want hammad in the side as well.

my team would be

nasir, ahmed, hafeez, umar akmal , haris sohail. Hammad azam, afridi , Wahab/sohail, ajmal, irfan, junaid.

both of sohail and wahab in 1 game not a good idea.

babar azam, i dont see him in playing 11 when you have already 3 spinners : hafeez, afridi, ajmal.

Posted by DaDaL0G on (July 26, 2013, 17:48 GMT)

4 or Probably 5 fast bowlers ?? r u kidding ? i guess pak should go with Sohail Tanvir or Asad Ali instead of Poor Wahab Riaz and i guess Afridi Should Bat Top of the Order 3,4 because he has only 2 fifties and both were made while he batted up the order and Hafeez should Finish the innings Because he is More Reliable than Afridi or Hammad Azzam My 11 Would be

1- Shahzad , 2- Jamshed, 3-U.Akmal, 4-Afridi, 5-Hafeez, 6-Harris Sohai/Aminl , 7- Hammad Azam, 8-Tanvir/Asad , 9-Ajmal,10-Junaid,11-Irfan

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 17:44 GMT)

T20 internationals is a joke. The ICC should get rid of this format at the international level. If WI win here, it would only give them false confidence. This format doesn't test the quality of a team under pressure. Still, both teams evenly matched but Pakistan have good bowlers.

Posted by Needii on (July 26, 2013, 17:39 GMT)

why Pak is not giving any chance to Zulfiqar Babar, i want to see him in playing 11, pls must give him atleast a single game, he is with team from a long time without getting even a single chance, he has a great domestic record consistently..!

Posted by msbsaad on (July 26, 2013, 16:58 GMT)

Wahab needs to be kicked out of the team he is to expensive, if can concede 15 runs in 6 balls to a no. 11 what is going to do in front the t20 stars. I don't get why he is in the team after he conceded 93 in 10 overs, he is not an allrounder he can bat sometimes only, if we need another seamer sohail tanvir is a much better choice in odis and t20s, and we can rather have a good spinner. I wish Raza Hasan was in the squad. my 11 will be 1. A.shehzad 2.N jamshed3.m. hafeez 4. umar akmal5.H. sohail 6. H azam/ u amin 7 s afridi 8 s ajmal 9 j khan 10 a ali/ s tanvir 11 m irfan

Posted by Chaudry_Cricket on (July 26, 2013, 16:39 GMT)

Well 1 thing I want to see is the self proclaimed proffesers form. Seeing as he tends to perform in t20 under his "captaincy". Anyways I want to see Hammad play both games. And I think Irfan should be rested for this series.

Playin 11 should be

Shehzad, Jamshed, Hafeez, Akmal, Haris, Hammad, Afridi, Junaid, Wahab, Tanvir and Ajmal

Posted by Sports4Youth on (July 26, 2013, 16:04 GMT)

I am sorry Kanishka, but you got the probables horribly wrong. And I hope with fingers crossed that HAFEEZ does not concur with you. A better eleven would be this.

1.Jamshed, 2.Shehzad, 3.Hafeez, 4.H.Sohail, 5.U.Akmal, 6.Umar Amin, 7.Hammad, 8.Afridi, 9.Ajmal, 10.Junaid, 11.Irfan

If Hafeez starts the series with W.Riaz & S.Tanvir in the same team, then Pakistan will surely loose. If he keeps anyone of them then also Pakistan may loose.

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 15:42 GMT)

My Team . . .

1. Nasir Jamshed 2. Ahmed Shehzad 3. Muhammad Hafeez 4. Haris Sohail 5. Umar Akmal 6. Hammad Azam 7. Shahid Afridi 8. Saeed Ajmal 9. Junaid Khan 10. Muhammad Irfan 11. Zulfiqar Babar/Sohail Tanvir/Wahab Riaz

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 15:32 GMT)

T20 is different from ODIs. People have to realise that. WI has done well in T20s and Tests the past months. They just can't seem to get the balance for ODI squads right.

Posted by SaadRocx on (July 26, 2013, 15:24 GMT)

Wahab Riaz? Are you kidding me? He'll go for plenty and Pak will surely loose because of Him...He's just too expensive and selecting him for T20's is a HUGE mistake.

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 15:12 GMT)

the team should be...ahmed,nasir,hafeez,umar akmal,haris/asad ali(bowler),umar amin,hammad,shahid,saeed,junaid,irfan

Posted by mhk21 on (July 26, 2013, 14:51 GMT)

my team

1-shehzad 2-jamshed 3-hafeez 4-umar 5-harris 6-Hammad 7-Afridi 8-Tanvir 9-Ajmal 10-junaid 11-irfan

this will be the most balanced team considering the choices ....Harris will provide some resilience in the middle order ...asad shafiq can replace him but considering the ODI form Pak should go with Haris who was able to score some runs

Posted by Stark62 on (July 26, 2013, 14:29 GMT)

Why would Pak play so many bowlers?!?!

I don't think Tanvir will get a chance ahead of Asad or Riaz and rightly so because he is history and needs to be kicked out the team, as soon as possible.

I think they'll play this 11: Shezhad, Nasir, Hafeez, Umar (wkt), Harris, Amin, Hammad, Afridi, Junaid, Ajmal and Irfan.

Hammad is a very capable medium pacer and Amin isn't bad either, although I would have preferred Sohaib Maqsood or Babar Azam in place of Amin.

The two best are playing each other in this format but I think Pak will come out on top because of their bowling, although a draw is the most likely outcome.

Posted by romirom on (July 26, 2013, 14:27 GMT)

common cricinfo your team expectation for pakistan is very much loosing side. pak are weak in bating so their bating side needs to be boost up by playing at least 5 specialist batsman than follow by hamad azam at no. 6 and afridi at no 7. i think there is no space for tanvir bcoz he had got lot of chance but he never perform as a match winner. look at your team prediction for t20. there are 7 specialist bowler. haris sohail must have to play alone with umar amin.

Posted by somethingdifferent on (July 26, 2013, 14:17 GMT)

Pakistan will surely loose if they play Wahab Riaz and / or if they donot play Hammad Azam.

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 13:53 GMT)

Pakistan bowlers will win the matches for Pak.. any target above 140 will be test for WI... Pakistan should go with extra batsman and include Hammad Azam in place of Irfan or Wahab.. Best of lucK GREEN TEAM :)

Posted by Haris_USA on (July 26, 2013, 13:46 GMT)

Misbah should be included in the team. We don't need another bowler. Bowling side is ok, but having one less batsman could be a huge problem.

Posted by Baundele on (July 26, 2013, 13:45 GMT)

West Indies have been on the wrong side of umpiring decisions, and they have a non-inspiring captain. And Chris gayle is failing continuously now. As a team, they somehow find a way to lose from winning positions. Except that 2004 champions trophy final, I do not remember any other instance when WI won close matches.

Pakistan also preferes T20 than ODI. I do not see any chances for WI unless gayle fires.

Posted by   on (July 26, 2013, 13:42 GMT)

Why would Pakistan play 5 specialist bowlers. Afridi will bat at 7 and they will add an extra batsmen.

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