West Indies vs Pakistan, Match 2, Friday 31 May, ICC World Cup 2019

Pakistan vs. West Indies match could prove to be one of the most scintillating matches of the entire World Cup. Both teams have got the firepower that can post big totals and put on a show. Like Pakistan, West Indies have done it all. In fact, they have exceeded Pakistan in terms of wins in international tournaments. Pakistan has won the WC once whereas West Indies have done it twice. They’ve both won ICC Champions Trophy a piece. This shows that they both have all the potential to pick up momentum and take the trophy away from others.

Pakistan facing West Indies in ODIs:

West Indies might be 9th on the ICC ODI rankings but they’re regaining their lost form. Pakistan, on the other hand, looks a bit rusty. In the star-studded history of both nations, Pakistan and West Indies faced each other a total of 133 times. Pakistan won 60 times whereas 70 times, the result went in favor of West Indies. 3 matches resulted in a tie. The win-loss margin might not seem too big here but in cricket, 1 match can make a difference and here West Indies certainly seem to be on top.

Although West Indies have won more matches, this also includes wins from the 70s and 80s when the West Indies were the strongest team of that time. Modern-day stats might show Pakistan to be better now but recent West Indian performance against England might put that notion to doubt. Most importantly, they’ve brought back Chris Gayle into the squad who was instrumental in tying the series 2-2. West Indies are back and ready as ever. The modern squad might provide us a glimpse of Sir Vivian Richards, Michael Holding and Curtly Ambrose in this WC.

Pakistan and West Indies contest in WC:

Pakistan is set to take on West Indies at the very start of the WC on 31st May 2019 in Trent Bridge Cricket Ground in Nottinghamshire. The ground has hosted 44 ODI matches. The pitch is mostly dry and flat and doesn’t allow much swing which can be a problem for Pakistani pace attack. Pakistan relies heavily on their bowling. It is a good batting track and ball comes nicely on the bat, something that the West Indian batsmen will be looking to exploit. For Pakistan, all would rest on how their bowlers perform on the day. If they can pick up early wickets, it will compel West Indian batsmen to play loose shots and the match might slip away from their hands.

On the other hand, West Indies will be relying heavily on the performance of Chris Gayle. Gayle recently scored two marvelous centuries and one fifty against England. We’re seeing shades of the old Chris Gayle and that might be a problem for Pakistan. Stats and recent performances favor West Indies at the moment. West Indies have done well in their recent series but Pakistan is still struggling for that sweet opening pair.

Predictions:

Pakistan vs. West Indies will be 50-50 situation. Whatever the result, it will be a nail-biting contest. Looking at the performances after CT 2017, Pakistan is likely to win the competition despite their recent mediocre performance in ODIs. West Indies might have shown some spark but Pakistan have been hammering the opposition for a while now and this recent dip in performance might be temporary. It will certainly be a close contest.

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