Who will win Eng vs Pak Champions Trophy 2017, 1st Semi-final?
The group stage has been done and dusted and the tournament now heads towards its business end. The first semi-final of the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 is set to be played between England and Pakistan on June 14 at the Sophia Gardens, Cardiff. Live telecast of the game is scheduled to begin at 10:30 AM local time.
Eng vs Pak CT 2017: Where to watch/Live streaming
TV channels: Star Sports 1, Fox Sports, SkySports, Channel 9
Live Streaming: Hotstar, Bet365, Foxtel
Out of the 18 one-day internationals played at the Sophia Gardens, 13 have been won by the side batting second. Toss therefore is going to have a major impact on the outcome of this match and the team that wins it on Wednesday is more likely to bowl first. England have chased three times in ODIs at this ground and have won on two occasions. So the hosts will make for a good bet if they bat second.
Read on for team previews, latest betting odds, betting tips and match prediction for Eng vs Pak 1st semi-final, Champions Trophy 2017...
England Team News & Playing 11
Even though the wicket is expected to be conducive for seam bowling, England are likely to retain legspinner Adil Rashid for this semi-final game as he was impressive in both the matches he played. Sam Billings could be drafted in as replacement for an out-of-form Jason Roy to partner Alex Hales at the opening slot.
Alex Hales, Joe Root and Jos Buttler had all hit fifties at Cardiff in the group game against New Zealand. Root is currently the leading run-getter for England this Champions Trophy with one hundred and one fifty and he will be the key man with the bat. Liam Plunkett and Adil Rashid have been the pick of the bowlers. The former troubled the Kiwis with his pace at this ground. He is the second-best bowler of the tournament with 8 wickets and England will back him to do some early damage to the Pakistani batting lineup.
England have finished at the top of their group with six points having won all three of their matches. It has been an allround performance from the team so far and they now have 11 wins in their last 12 one-day internationals.
England Predicted Playing 11
EJG Morgan (c), Sam Billings, AD Hales, JE Root, BA Stokes, JC Buttler (wk), MM Ali, AU Rashid, LE Plunkett, MA Wood, JT Ball
Pakistan Team News & Playing 11
Pakistan have no injury issues ahead of their semi-final tie against England and have all their players match-fit. Fahim Ashraf who did a good job with both the bat and ball in the last game is likely to retain his place in the side.
Fakhar Zaman is proving to be a good find for Pakistan. He scored a brisk fifty against Sri Lanka at Cardiff and one can expect another fine innings from him against England at the same ground. Skipper Sarfraz Ahmed too knocked off an unbeaten 61 in that game and his contribution down the order is going to be crucial for the team. Hasan Ali and Junaid Khan took three wickets apiece to restrict Sri Lanka to a modest total. The two are doing a good job with the ball for Pakistan and are definitely the bowlers to watch out for.
Pakistan have done surprisingly well to bounce back into the tournament after being whacked by India in their opening fixture. With wins in their following two encounters against South Africa and Sri Lanka, they have made it to the semis as the second-placed team in their group with four points.
Pakistan Predicted Playing 11
Sarfraz Ahmed (c/wk), Azhar Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Imad Wasim, Fahim Ashraf, Mohammad Amir, Hasan Ali, Junaid Khan
Team Form in Last Five Matches (most recent first)
England: W W W L W
Pakistan: W W L W W
England vs Pakistan Head to Head in ODIs
England have won 49 out of the 79 one-day internationals they have played against Pakistan - a win percentage of 62.02. The two teams have faced each other twice in ODIs at the Sophia Gardens. While their first clash in 2006 resulted in a washout, the second one in 2016 was won by Pakistan who chased down England's 302 with four wickets and 10 balls to spare.
England vs Pakistan Betting Odds
Betting on England who are favorites to win this first semi-final at 1.39 with Betfair and 1.33 with Bet365 is more likely to yield better returns, especially if they happen to bat second. The hosts have looked red hot in all three departments of the game so far in this Champions Trophy and as such, it becomes really hard to look elsewhere for a bet. Pakistan normally prefer setting up a target and then backing their bowlers to defend it. But batting first against a top-class English attack on a pitch that tends to offer more assistance to the bowlers early on could prove disastrous for them. Pakistan seem to be caught in a problem either way and are therefore outsiders at 3.5 with Betfair and 3.4 with Bet365.
England vs Pakistan Prediction
England have been absolutely clinical in the 50-overs format this year and are once again proving why they are such a hard nut to crack in their own den. The only worry for the team has been the poor form of Jason Roy and that too should be taken care of if they bring in Sam Billings in his place. Plus, they have a terrific ODI record at the Sophia Gardens with six wins from eight completed matches. Pakistan however have something to cheer about as they beat the hosts the last time they played an ODI against them at this ground. But it's not going to be easy this time around with most of the English players in top form. We thus predict England to win this match and be the first team to make the finals day.
Final Verdict: Back England to beat Pakistan in the 1st semi-final of ICC Champions Trophy 2017 at 1.39 with Betfair and 1.33 with Bet365.