Pakistan: These two teams could not be more mismatched and be on the opposite ends of the spectrum. Pakistan are currently in red-hot form, having beaten South Africa in South Africa in both ODIs and T20Is recently. Granted that South Africa were weakened, it must have still sent their confidence and fans’ expectations sky high.
In Zimbabwe, they face familiar opponents and a side they almost always brush aside. Thanks to Zimbabwe being a low maintenance side, they were frequent collaborators with Pakistan and visited the Asian nation even when others would shudder at just the thought of heading to Pakistan. To return the favour, Pakistan also visit Zimbabwe often but never plays the gracious hosts or the grateful guest.
The likes of Fakhar Zaman and Imam-ul-Haq bled Zimbabwe a lot the last time they visited these shores. Fakhar, in particular, has an unreal average of 172.33 against Zimbabwe in ODIs. Fortunately, this tour does not have any 50-over matches.
Pakistan will still have many weapons to unleash on Zimbabwe in the T20I series, with the likes of captain Babar Azam and wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Rizwan showing great form in South Africa.
However, the tourists may try some of their fringe players in the series as this is T20 World Cup year and you won’t get many other chances to experiment.
Zimbabwe, on the other hand, have been as woeful as you’d expect them to be. They were swept aside 3-0 in the T20I series they played in Pakistan late last year. This year, they played a three-match Test series at home with Afghanistan and again ended up getting whitewashed.
Granted that it was a different format but still it would need a miracle for the Africans to avoid defeat in all three matches of the series.
Zimbabwe do have some decent options scattered around their team, with their brightest prospect being the young Wesley Madhevere. Others such as Ryan Burl, Sean Williams, Craig Ervine and the gargantuan Blessing Muzarabani also have the tools to impress.
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