World Cup 2023: The Shocking Opening Choice – Fakhar Zaman, Abdullah Shafique, or Imam ul Haq?

  • Pakistan has several options for their opening pair
  • Fakhar Zaman’s Recent Form and Imam ul Haq’s Consistency
  • Abdullah Shafique’s performance in the Asia Cup has generated optimism about his potential in the opening role

As the highly anticipated Cricket World Cup 2023 approaches, the excitement among cricket enthusiasts is reaching its climax. Pakistani fans, in particular, are eager to witness their favorite players shine on the global stage. However, recent disappointments in the Asia Cup have raised questions about Pakistan’s batting lineup, particularly its opening pair.

In any cricket match, a strong opening partnership lays the foundation for a competitive total on the scoreboard. For Pakistan, the options for the opening pair include the experienced Fakhar Zaman, Imam ul Haq and the promising Abdullah Shafique.

Let’s delve into the recent performances of these three contenders in the ODI format:

Fakhar Zaman

If we scrutinize Fakhar Zaman’s last ten innings, it’s clear that his recent form hasn’t been impressive. The struggles he faced during the Asia Cup were evident. However, it’s important to remember that Fakhar Zaman is still at no 10 in ranking in ODI, He cannot be solely judged by his recent slump. He has a history of shining in crucial matches and has played pivotal roles in Pakistan’s victories on numerous occasions. Despite his current struggles, the question remains whether he should open the innings for Pakistan in the upcoming World Cup.

Match #OpponentLocationDateRunsBalls Faced4s6sStrike RateInningsDismissal Type
1New ZealandKarachi5 May 202333906051.561caught
2New ZealandKarachi7 May 2023540050.001caught
3AfghanistanHambantota22 Aug 202330345088.231bowled
4AfghanistanHambantota24 Aug 202327335081.811caught
5AfghanistanColombo (RPS)26 Aug 202314203070.001caught
6NepalMultan30 Aug 2023TDNB
7IndiaPallekele2 Sep 202320313064.512lbw
8BangladeshLahore6 Sep 202327502054.002bowled
9IndiaColombo (RPS)10 Sep 20234110036.361bowled
10Sri LankaColombo (RPS)14 Sep 2023

Abdullah Shafique

Abdullah Shafique, on the other hand, is a relatively new face in international cricket. Despite his limited experience, his performance in the last matches of Asia Cup was promising. Many cricket enthusiasts are optimistic about Abdullah Shafique’s potential to provide stability and solid starts at the top of the order.

RunsMinsBF4s6sSRPosDismissalInnsOppositionGroundStart Date
2650040.001bowled1v NetherlandsRotterdam21 Aug 2022
721140050.004caught2v New ZealandRawalpindi29 Apr 2023
1931230182.604caught1v New ZealandKarachi3 May 2023
5298693275.361caught1v Sri LankaColombo (RPS)14 Sep 2023

Imam ul Haq

Another name that shouldn’t be overlooked is Imam ul Haq. Currently ranked at number 5 in the ODI batting rankings, Imam ul Haq has been a consistent performer in the form. Furthermore, Imam’s fielding skills add value to the team. He is an agile fielder, contributing to crucial run-outs and taking catches in the outfield. His remarkable performances in ODIs make him a strong candidate to open the innings for Pakistan.

RunsMinsBF4s6sSRPosDismissalInnsOppositionGroundStart Date
6095655192.302lbw2v New ZealandRawalpindi27 Apr 2023
2445263092.302caught2v New ZealandRawalpindi29 Apr 2023
901661077184.112bowled1v New ZealandKarachi3 May 2023
61149942064.892caught1v AfghanistanHambantota22 Aug 2023
911701054086.662caught2v AfghanistanHambantota24 Aug 2023
1353301043.332caught1v AfghanistanColombo (RPS)26 Aug 2023
532141035.712run out1v NepalMultan30 Aug 2023
TDNBv IndiaPallekele2 Sep 2023
78150845492.852bowled2v BangladeshLahore6 Sep 2023
923181050.002caught2v IndiaColombo (RPS)10 Sep 2023

As the World Cup draws nearer, the excitement continues to build. While fans eagerly await the commencement of this prestigious event, they also anticipate the crucial decision regarding Pakistan’s opening pair. Whether it’s Fakhar Zaman, Abdullah Shafique, Imam ul Haq, or a combination of these talented players, the hope is that they will provide Pakistan with the strong start they need to make a mark in the tournament. The answers will unfold on the field, and the world will be watching with bated breath as Pakistan takes on the world’s best in the Cricket World Cup 2023.

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