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Saturday June 22, 2024

PAK vs ENG: Shadab Khan, Saim Ayub likely to be dropped for 3rd T20I

Usman Khan, Abrar Ahmed, or Naseem Shah expected to be lined up in playing XI

By Sports Desk
May 28, 2024
Pakistani cricketers Saim Ayub (left) and Shadab Khan seen while conversing with Geo News in these stills taken from a video. — Geo News
Pakistani cricketers Saim Ayub (left) and Shadab Khan seen while conversing with Geo News in these stills taken from a video. — Geo News

In a bid to avoid series loss, Pakistan are likey to make two changes for the third T20I of the four-match series against England, scheduled to be played tonight at the Sophia Gardens, Cardiff. 

The Englishmen defeated the Green Shirts in the second T20I, while the first encounter was abandoned due to rain.

It is very crucial for Pakistan to make a strong comeback in today’s match, otherwise they would lose the series.

Two changes may be made in the lineup of the Pakistan team for today's crucial match, as all-rounder Shadab Khan and Saim Ayub are likely to be dropped, while Usman Khan, Abrar Ahmed, or Naseem Shah might be included in their instead.

Shadab conceded 55 runs in four overs during the second T20I. Meanwhile, Saim Ayub scored two runs in seven balls during the same match.

However, the final decision will be taken prior to the toss, depending on the pitch and conditions.

On the other hand, England squad has some significant changes as well, Jos Buttler is unable to lead the English team due to paternity leave. Therefore, Moeen Ali will take his place as captain.

The 33-year-old, Buttler, played a captain's knock and scored 84 runs on 51 balls with the help of eight fours and three sixes in the second T20I match. During the process, he also completed 3,000 runs in T20I cricket, becoming only the ninth player in the shorter format to do so.

Regarding the weather in Cardiff following Leeds, it is currently raining periodically, but two hours prior to the evening match, the weather should be clear.

In the second T20I match, Babar Azam and Co. were bowled out for 160 while chasing a target of 184. This was England's eighth win in the last 11 T20Is against Pakistan.

Fakhar Zaman starred for Pakistan in a losing cause as the left-handed batter played an explosive knock of 45 runs off 21 balls with the help of three fours and five sixes. Skipper Babar Azam scored 32 runs on 26 balls as he was the second-highest run-getter.

Moreover, down the order, Iftikhar Ahmed (23 off 17) and Imad Wasim (22 off 13) provided crucial runs but they weren’t enough to propel Pakistan to victory.