Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Pakistan vs West Indies QF Preview

-Pakistan vs. West Indies Head to Head! Pakistan Have Played 114: Won 48/Lost 64/Tied 2 (43% winning record).

-Pakistan have won all of their 4 last and latest one day internationals against them so have had the better of them in recent times. Although West Indies beat Pakistan in the 2007 Cricket World Cup and also during the semi final of the 2004 ICC Champions Trophy in Southampton which are occasions to keep a bearing on.

-After the World Cup these two sides will contest a 5 Match One Day Series with One T20 international commencing on the 21st of April. Therefore, the team which loses will be down and out with only this to focus on as the next major scheduled event whereas the other will get to prepare for the semi final by marching onwards and upwards into considerably bigger and better visions /occasions. Obviously that is only what is resting on their minds at present.

-Misbah Ul Haq has scored 2 half centuries in just 4 appearances against the West Indies before. As always you can count on him to deliver. He may really begin to tuck into this one paced attack and notch up his 3rd tournament half century. The indications are that he has been training really hard and is fully focussed on this encounter so perhaps it will be his day once more, despite failing to trouble the scorers with his golden duck on Saturday against the Baggy Greens. I am tipping Pakistan's Mr Cricket to deliver.

-Kamran Akmal averages a very healthy 35 against the West Indies. This includes his maiden ODI century during a triangular series in Australia from the 04/05 season and a breath taking match winning cameo where he stole an unlikely victory during the final over of an ODI in UAE 2008 from the jaws of defeat with some formidable strokes to totally stun the men from the Caribbean Beaches. 16 runs were required from 5 deliveries and the short figure opened himself up and chanced his arms to clear the boundary over deep cover twice consecutively. In 2005 he once came to the wicket and struck 3 maximums from the final 3 deliveries of the innings. Generally, some of his best memories have come against the West Indies and his record is good against them in ODI cricket.

-Pakistan are being presented a perfect opportunity to reach the semi finals here against a relatively weaker opponent if form, quality and rankings are anything to go by. It's MAKE or BREAK time. All previous matches have been building up to this. Here is where it really begins to count. Pakistan have reached the semi final stages previously in 1979,1987,1992,1992 and all other times in 1975, 1983,1996,2003 and 2007 their campaigns have been heartbreaking forgettable flops. Reaching the semis tomorrow will symbolise a proud respectable campaign and mean a lot even if Pakistan are to go no further afterwards.

-The last time Pakistan played a quarter final in a World Cup they lost to the hands of India in 1996.

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