Third England-Pakistan Test: Squads, Probable XI, Forecast and Prediction
The third Test between England and West Indies will commence on August 21 at 2:00 PM at the Rose Bowl in Southampton.
The hosts currently lead the series 1-0 after the rain-interrupted second Test ended in a draw.
Joe Root (Captain), James Anderson, Jofra Archer, Dominic Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Ollie Pope, Dom Sibley, Ollie Robinson, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood
Azhar Ali (captain), Babar Azam, Abid Ali, Asad Shafiq, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Imam-ul-Haq, Imran Khan Sr, Kashif Bhatti, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Naseem Shah, Sarfaraz Ahmed (wk), Shadab Khan, Shaheen Afridi, Shan Masood, Sohail Khan, Usman Shinwari, Wahab Riaz, Yasir Shah
England will likely field the same XI that they did in the second Test against Pakistan.
Opener Rory Burns has had a difficult series, having scored just 14 runs in his three outings thus far.
While the England think tank will surely be mindful of his form and contemplate making a change, they will likely retain him for the final Test of the three-match series.
Probable Playing XI: Rory Burns, Dom Sibley, Joe Root(captain), Ollie Pope, Jos Buttler (wk), Sam Curran, Chris Woakes, Dominic Bess, Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad, James Anderson.
Pakistan made one change to the side that lost the first Test and brought in Fawad Alam to replace Shadab Khan.
However, the veteran had a dismal outing and was dismissed for a duck in Pakistan's only innings of the Test match.
The visitors now have a decision on their hands; whether to retain Alam for the must-win contest or bring back Shadab.
They could also opt to try all-rounder Haris Sohail but will likely lean towards restoring Shadab back into the playing XI.
Probable Playing XI: Shan Masood, Abid Ali, Azhar Ali (captain), Babar Azam, Asad Shafiq, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Yasir Shah, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Abbas, Naseem Shah.
Rains are predicted for Days 1 and 5 of the Test match, while Days 2 and 3 are expected to have clear skies.
Overcast conditions are predicted for Day 4.
Pakistan were outstanding for three-fourths of the contest but threw the game away in the final quarter.
With Stokes out, England have a big hole in their side that any of the potential replacements might fail to fill.
While Pakistan will certainly feel like they have the upper hand, their hopes are likely to be washed away by the rain again. Expect a draw.
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Stu Forster
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