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Pakistan likely to make two changes for ODI series decider against South Africa

Danish Aziz and Asif Ali proved to be the weak link in Pakistan’s batting in the first two ODIs of the series

Pakistan likely to make two changes for ODI series decider against South Africa PHOTO: AFP

Leg-spinner Usman Qadir and hard-hitting batsman Haider Ali are likely to be given a chance in the third and final One-day International (ODI) against South Africa at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Wednesday.

According to details, Danish Aziz and Asif Ali proved to be the weak link in Pakistan’s batting in the first two ODIs of the series. Aziz was only able to score three and nine runs in the first and second ODI respectively. The left-hand batsman had trouble facing short-pitched deliveries from right-arm pacer Anrich Nortje. However, Nortje won’t be able available in the third ODI due to his commitment with IPL, which might provide relief for Aziz. Pakistan team management want to give proper opportunities to young players, hence Aziz is likely to retain his spot.

However, the management is considering replacing Asif with Haider in the middle-order. Asif wasn’t part of the ODI squad initially and was only included after middle-order batsman Saud Shakeel got injured a day before Pakistan team’s departure. Asif failed to make use of the opportunity as he could only score a total of 21 runs in both ODIs.

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According to sources, Usman Qadir will replace injured Shadab Khan, who has been ruled out of the ongoing South Africa tour and upcoming tour of Zimbabwe after suffering an injury during the second ODI against the Proteas on Sunday.

Sources further added that wicketkeeper Sarfaraz Ahmed is unlikely to feature in the playing XI in third ODI. Team management is not in favour of playing Mohammad Rizwan as a specialist batsman. Hasan Ali is also slowly getting back in rhythm after recovering from Covid-19, but is likely to make a comeback during the T20I series.

The team management will make a final decision regarding the playing XI for the final ODI after the practice session on Tuesday.