Wahab Riaz has been one of those players who has travelled the world in various T20 leagues and has done quite a lot for his national team too. His memorable spell against Shane Watson in the 2015 world cup has been etched into the cricket folklore and so have his spells been in the various T20 leagues.
He also knows the nitty gritty of the game of bowling in the UAE where for a fast bowler it is definitely variations work a lot more than pace. He has known the Pakistan team and has seen the evolution over time into this new era which is lead by Babar Azam.
He recently gave a statement where he has said that the Pakistan team has the potential to beat any team including India.
The reference here off course is the upcoming clash between the two teams on 24th of October in the World T20 in UAE.
The Pakistan team no doubt is a strong team full of options and players who can deliver in the most difficult of circumstances. From the batting strength of the likes of Babar Azam and Rizwan to the bowling prowess of Shaheen Shah Afridi and Hasan Ali.
They have experience with Mohammad Hafeez who is a veteran of the game and is still performing at the highest level and youngsters like Shadab Khan who have experience of playing cricket all over the world in T20 leagues.
This gives them great depth particularly on the UAE pitches. They are unbeaten in UAE for the last three series and have won the previous three series by a 3-0 margin. The UAE becomes a home game for them and they certainly have the edge over every other team.
They also had a hard-fought series against England recently where their fearless approach was very evident. They have a lot of cricketers who can be multi-faceted. Players like Shadab Khan, Hafeez, Faheem Ashraf, Imad Wasim and even Hasan Ali are players who can come in at any stage of the game and turn it on its head with both ball and bat.
Their reliance on Babar and Rizwan is definitely a cause for concern for them however.
In the ICC tournaments, India have always had the upper hand over Pakistan but this certainly gives them their best chance to get their maiden world cup victory over India. Pakistan are former World T20 champions and would look to repeat this feat in the coming tournament. The ball doesn’t quite come on to the bat in the UAE and this is where their bowling options become lethal. The likes of Shadab and Imad really become difficult to get away. Hafeez recently showed how good he still is with the ball when he bowled a spell against the hard-hitting west indies team and conceded 6 runs in his 4 overs. Such a spell often could make the difference between winning and losing a game. So, he could be a good choice in the cricket match prediction when the tournament begins because he can bat too.
The other players they can look at are the likes of Sharjeel Khan and Fakhar Zaman both of whom are proven performers in the PSL. Usman Qadir has also burst onto the scene recently and has shown that he does have a lot to offer as a spin bowler and can be difficult to hit out of the park on the slower pitches. Overall Pakistan is a well-balanced side and, on their day, they can upstage any opposition.