World Cup

ICC World Cup 2019 – Match 17 – Australia V Pakistan – FCN Preview

Rain forecast as UK weather continues to interrupt World Cup

In what was the second washout in four days, the UK’s trademark cold & wet weather has put a dampener on the 2019 ICC World Cup. The location was always going to be an issue given its high-percentage of rainfall, however the show must go on….that’s if it ever stops raining! Pakistan get set to do battle with Australia at Taunton where more wet weather is expected.

Frustratingly for Pakistan, they’ve already had one of their matches washed out in their World Cup fixture. After defeating England at Trent Bridge, the men in green had some real momentum behind them heading into their third game against Sri Lanka, only to be let down by the weather. To make matters worse, they could potentially be looking at a consecutive-washout, lets cross our fingers and hope that’s not the case! A number of Pakistani batsmen looked in great touch at Trent Bridge. Mohammad Hafeez’s match-winning 84 striking at 135+ was the best of them, while Babar Azam, Imam-ul-Haq, Sarfaraz Ahmed and even Fakhar Zaman made solid contributions. Against a fast & fiery bowling unit in Australia, Pakistan’s openers will be put to the test against a troublesome new ball.

Australia has been relatively-lucky in their draw so far, rain hasn’t played a part in any of their games as of yet. That could all be about to change tomorrow in Taunton, for the time being they’ll focus on the fundamentals rather than weather-related precautions. Australia’s recent loss to India was by no means a failure, perhaps a learning curve more than anything. With that being said, changes are expected against Pakistan. Usman Khawaja’s dominance in the U.A.E. hasn’t followed him to the World Cup, Nathan Coulter-Nile’s one wicket in three games continues to put him in the spotlight, and leg-spinner Adam Zampa didn’t bowl well at all against India. As a result; Shaun Marsh, Nathan Lyon and Jason Behrendorff could all be in line for a spot in Australia’s starting XI at Taunton. All-rounder Marcus Stoinis has also been ruled out for this match and potentially even longer with a side strain.

It should be mandatory for the Taunton spectators to perform a pre-game rain dance, lovers of cricket all over the world are suffering and more importantly costing teams valuable points in the process. Rain, rain go away. Come again another day!

Australia’s Usman Khawaja is clean bowled by India’s Jasprit Bumrah during the ICC Cricket World Cup group stage match at The Oval, London. (Photo by Nigel French/PA Images via Getty Images)

Fantasy breakdown

Top 5 fantasy picks – Australia

  • Steve Smith
  • Mitchell Starc
  • Pat Cummins
  • Aaron Finch
  • Glenn Maxwell

Wildcard pick – Jason Behrendorff

Top 5 fantasy picks – Pakistan

  • Babar Azam
  • Imam-ul-Haq
  • Mohammad Amir
  • Wahab Riaz
  • Fakhar Zaman

Wildcard pick – Shoaib Malik

Predicted Team XI’s

Australia (possible) – 1. David Warner 2. Aaron Finch © 3. Steve Smith 4. Usman Khawaja 5. Shaun Marsh 6. Glenn Maxwell 7. Alex Carey (wk) 8. Nathan Coulter-Nile/Jason Behrendorff 9. Pat Cummins 10. Mitchell Starc 11. Adam Zampa/Nathan Lyon.

Pakistan (possible) – 1. Imam-ul-Haq 2. Fakhar Zaman 3. Babar Azam 4. Mohammad Hafeez 5. Sarfaraz Ahmed (c & wk) 6. Asif Ali 7. Shoaib Malik 8. Wahab Riaz 9. Shadab Khan 10. Hasan Ali/Shaheen Afridi 11. Mohammad Amir.

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