The cricketing action is set to unfold on Friday, October 6, at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad.
Pakistan: The squad includes Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Mohammad Rizwan, Saud Shakeel, Iftikhar Ahmed, Salman Ali Agha, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, and Mohammad Wasim.
Netherlands: The team comprises Scott Edwards (c), Max O’Dowd, Bas de Leede, Vikram Singh, Teja Nidamanuru, Paul van Meekeren, Colin Ackermann, Roelof van der Merwe, Logan van Beek, Aryan Dutt, Ryan Klein, Wesley Barresi, Saqib Zulfiqar, Shariz Ahmad, and Sybrand Engelbrecht.
Players to Watch Out For
Team Pakistan’s captain, Babar Azam, has already set the stage on fire with his impressive form in the warm-up matches ahead of the World Cup. He notched up two half-centuries against New Zealand (80) and Australia (90).
Team Pakistan will be banking on Babar to carry forward his sublime form into the World Cup. As a reliable top-order batsman, Babar’s performance will be crucial for the team’s batting strategy. His ability to anchor the innings will provide the aggressive batsmen in the team the freedom to play their natural game.
His leadership skills will also be put to the test as he leads the team onto the field.
Bas de Leede
Following his father’s legacy, Bas de Leede is all set to make his mark in the Cricket World Cup. As an all-rounder, de Leede has proven his mettle against formidable opponents, as evident from Netherlands’ last international match in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2023 in Zimbabwe.
De Leede amassed 285 runs at a strike rate of over 100 and emerged as the highest wicket-taker for his side with 15 wickets. His standout performance came against Scotland, where he scored a century and took five wickets, propelling Netherlands into the 2023 Cricket World Cup.
The Dutch team will be hoping for a similar inspiring performance from de Leede against Pakistan in Hyderabad.
Pakistan, with a 6-0 head-to-head record in their favour, are the clear favourites going into the match. After testing various combinations in the practice matches, the Men in Green are all set to put their best foot forward against the Netherlands.
Considering the high-scoring nature of the Hyderabad pitch, as seen in the warm-up matches, Pakistan will be hoping for a stellar performance from Fakhar Zaman, Iftikhar Ahmed, and Shadab Khan. The team will also be looking for their pacers to find their rhythm from the get-go.
For the Dutch, the strategy will be to gain an early advantage and maintain it throughout the match. They will rely on their inspirational captain Scott Edwards and experienced players like Logan van Beek, Roelof van der Merwe, and Wesley Barresi to deliver under pressure.