Afghanistan vs Pakistan 1st T20I: Sharjah Cricket Stadium Pitch Report, Team Records at Sharjah
Updated on: Mar 24, 2023 1:14 am IST
Afghanistan are all set to host Pakistan in the UAE for a three-match T20I series and the opening T20I encounter is scheduled to be played at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium in Sharjah on 24 March, 2023. The Afghanistan managed to defeat UAE during their most recent T20I assignment by a 2-1 margin in a three-match T20I series earlier this calendar year. On the other hand, Pakistan finished as the runners-up in the 2022 T20 World Cup played in Australia where they lost the final at the hands of England.
Sharjah Cricket Stadium Pitch Report
The Sharjah Cricket Stadium is known to have a pitch that generally favors spin bowlers. While scoring runs may not be too difficult, it is not uncommon for teams to select three spinners in their playing eleven. For this reason, it is recommended that teams opt to bat first in this Afghanistan vs Pakistan 1st T20I match.
In Sharjah, the pitch conditions are ideal for spin bowling. The ball tends to turn sharply, making it challenging for batsmen to score runs off spinners. Hence, teams are expected to opt for spin-heavy bowling attacks, with some even going for three specialist spinners. With more spinners in the team, the captain will have more options to exploit the conditions and restrict the opposition’s scoring.
Despite the spin-friendly conditions, it is still possible to score runs in Sharjah. The key for batsmen is to be patient, wait for the loose balls, and play with a straight bat. With the fielding restrictions in the limited-overs format, the boundaries are short, which further aids batsmen to score runs quickly.
Considering the conditions in Sharjah, it is advisable for teams to bat first. This way, they can take advantage of the spin-friendly conditions in the second innings as the surface tends to slow down. However, the dew factor won’t play a much bigger role in this AFG vs PAK match.
Team Records at Sharjah
- During the last T20I match played between these two teams at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Pakistan defeated Afghanistan by 1 wicket in a nail-biting encounter.
- Out of 39 T20 matches taken place at this ground, as many as 22 times teams batting first won have emerged victorious while 17 matches have been won by chasing sides.
- The average score batting first remains around the 140-150 mark.
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