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Asia Cup 2022 - Pakistan Predicted Playing 11

Best Pakistan playing XI for the upcoming Asia Cup 2022 which will take place in the UAE, schedule and venues will be announced soon

Posted Date: Aug 08, 2022

Posted By: Joy

Asia Cup 2022 - Pakistan Predicted Playing 11
Asia Cup 2022 - Pakistan Predicted Playing 11

Pakistan Predicted Playing XI for Asia Cup 2022

Cricket fans are being treated to a golden year of T20 cricket.

With the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 finishing less than nine months ago, we’re already staring down the barrel of the next T20 World Cup, which kicks off in mid-October.

Between now and then, however, another major tournament looms, in the form of the Asia Cup 2022.

Having only played one T20I this year, and currently sitting at third in the T20I rankings, Pakistan will be looking to have a strong Asia Cup and head into the T20 World Cup 2022 peaking at the right time.

Here’s a look at how Pakistan’s team is shaping up for the upcoming Asia Cup 2022.

Pakistan Names Strong Squad For Tough Pool

Taking place over a packed two weeks from 27 August to 11 September, the Asia Cup 2022 is crucial for Pakistan.

Not only does it represent an opportunity to build form for the T20 World Cup commencing a month later, but it’s one of the few chances they have to play against their fierce rivals, India.

Drawn in the same pool as India and a qualifier (most likely hosts UAE), Pakistan will have to hit the ground running in order to make the Super Four phase of the competition.

Fifteen players have been named in the squad to represent Pakistan at the Asia Cup 2022, and they are as follows: Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Asif Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan, Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shahnawaz Dahani, and Usman Qadir.

All that remains is the question of which eleven players will make up Pakistan’s run-on team.

Predicted Playing XI For Opening Asia Cup 2022 Match

With their opening match scheduled against World No.1 India on August 28, here’s who is most likely to comprise Pakistan’s playing XI:

Babar Azam

Chosen as captain for the Asia Cup 2022, and ranked No.1 in the ICC T20I batting rankings, there was never any doubt about Azam’s place in the Pakistan XI.

The opening batter brings with him good form from the recent Sri Lankan Test series, having scored two half centuries and a century in the 1-1 draw. Azam will be looking to transfer this momentum to the shorter form of the game, a challenge which shouldn’t be too difficult, given his run-a-ball ODI century against the West Indies in June.

Mohammed Rizwan

Another guaranteed name in Pakistan’s XI against India is Mohammed Rizwan.

Despite Pakistan bowing out in the semi-finals of the 2021 T20 World Cup, Rizwan will hold fond memories—the opener accrued 281 runs across his six innings. He places third in the ICC T20I batting rankings, and combined with Azam, completes an intimidating opening partnership.

Fakar Zaman

With 1253 runs across 59 T20I innings, at a strike rate of 132, Fakar Zaman is the kind of batter who has the ability to take the game away from an opposition quickly.

Pakistan will be hoping he can do just that in the Asia Cup 2022, building on his red hot PSL form earlier this year. Zaman was named best batter as his side Lahore Qalandars won the tournament, with the batter striking seven half centuries and a maiden century.

Asif Ali

Able to play anywhere in the middle order, Asif Ali is a real asset to Pakistan’s batting line up.

Just ask Afghanistan, who will still be reeling from the 25* he crushed off 7 balls against them at last year’s T20 World Cup. Ali is exactly the type of player Pakistan will want to be seeing the ball well and feeling comfortable about his position in the team ahead of the 2022 T20 World Cup.

Khushdil Shah

When it comes to domestic cricket, Khushdil Shah is a run scoring machine, and looks likely to retain his place in Pakistan’s middle order.

Having played for Pakistan in the recent ODI series against the West Indies, Shah is coming off scores of 41*, 22 and 34. The left-hander will be eager to kick on and make a big score in one of his Asia Cup 2022 innings to remind fans of the 35-ball century he scored in the National T20 Cup in 2020.

Iftikhar Ahmed

Another player with the ability to bat anywhere from 4-6 in the line up, expect Iftikhar Ahmed to get the nod ahead of the likes of Haider Ali for this spot.

With over 3000 T20 runs to his name, and a knack for squeezing out tight overs that produce the occasional wicket, Ahmed is a genuine all-rounder who will add both batting and bowling options to the Pakistan XI.

Shadab Khan

Off the back of a record-breaking PSL, where he became the first player to score over 250 runs and take 15+ wickets, Shadab Khan is a certainty in Pakistan’s XI.

The young all-rounder has quickly become a vital cog in the Pakistani cricketing machine, and the national side will be asking him to do more of what he did for Islamabad United in this year’s PSL—where in one match, he took 4/20 and struck 52 off 32.

Usman Qadir

Having only debuted for Pakistan in 2020, Usman Qadir is not yet a mainstay of the national team.

However, with 24 wickets from 18 games at an economy of 7.5, Qadir is a useful bowler to have in tight matches. His leg break and clever variations will pair well with the UAE pitches, and there’s a good chance he’ll be preferred to someone like Mohammad Nawaz for this reason.

Haris Rauf

With an eye towards their opening game, Pakistan will be excited to unleash Haris Rauf.

In their most recent match against India, Rauf took three wickets and strangled Pakistan’s rivals at the death. Bowling in excess of 145 km/h and possessing a sharp yorker, Rauf will be a key man for Pakistan at each end of the innings.

Shahanawaz Dahani

He is one of the youngest bowling talents in Pakistan.

He is new to international cricket and has played only a few games for the team, but he has been performing well in the PSL. He took 17 wickets in 11 PSL matches for his team. He has played only 2 matches for the national team where he has bowled at an economy of 6.71 taking 2 wickets.

Shaheen Afridi

Rounding out the playing XI for Pakistan will be pace superstar Shaheen Afridi.

An ability to swing the ball both ways, consistently hit his lengths, and occasionally produce an absolute pearler to remove set batsmen, Afridi is integral to Pakistan’s pace attack. Coming off 20 wickets in this year’s PSL, Afridi heads into the Asia Cup 2022 full of confidence.

Pakistan’s first match of the Asia Cup 2022 is on 28 August against India, and will determine which of the two sides plays a sudden death match against the third member of Group A.