Following the defeat in the second ODI against South Africa, it is rumored that Pakistan will make two changes to their starting line-up in the third ODI. The series is currently tied at 1-1, with the series decider scheduled to be played on 7 April at Centurion.
Pakistan won the first ODI by three wickets as they chased down a target of 274 on the last ball of the match. South Africa bounced back in the second ODI, winning the match by 17 runs despite heroics from Fakhar Zaman, who scored a memorable 193 in the run chase.
Pakistan will be forced to make one change, as vice-captain, Shadab Khan, has been ruled out of the tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe after suffering a toe injury during the second ODI. Leg-spinner, Usman Qadir, is likely to be included in the line-up as Shadab’s replacement.
The exciting young batsman, Haider Ali, is set to be included in the line-up at the expense of Asif Ali who has been disappointing in the series thus far, scoring only 21 runs in the 2 innings.
Young all-rounder, Danish Aziz, is likely to keep his place in the starting XI, as the team management believes that the youngster has what it takes to make a difference in the match. Danish has had a disappointing start to his international career. He has scored only 12 runs in his first two matches and has shown weakness against quality pace bowling.
Fast bowler, Hasan Ali, is also unlikely to take part in the ODI series, Hasan suffered from COVID-19 a few weeks before the team’s departure, and according to team management, he is still getting back into the rhythm.
Former captain, Sarfaraz Ahmed, was rumored to be a part of the starting XI before the start of the series, but it looks unlikely that he will take part in the ODI series. Sources revealed that the team management does not want to replace Mohammad Rizwan as the wicket-keeper of the side. It remains to be seen whether he gets into the playing XI as a wicket-keeper as Danish Aziz sits out with Rizwan playing as a batsman.
The final decision regarding the playing XI will be made after assessing the pitch and weather conditions, as rain is expected in Centurion on matchday.