Pakistan v Australia
Saturday 2 April, 11:00
TV: live on BT Sport
Hit them with spin
Pakistan levelled up affairs with a strong batting show in game two at Lahore on Thursday. Just as well because their bowling attack is looking increasingly poweder-puff.
Poor Shaheen Shah Afridi is having to do it all on his own and his four-wicket haul rescued Pakistan from conceding something monstrous. Afridi's workload is, surely, too much and soon his brilliance will be blunted.
We have been saying it since before a ball was bowled in the series but Usman Qadir's spin gives Australia something to think about. Pairing him with Zahid Mahmood and dropping Haris Rauf is not a bad ploy.
Possible XI: Fakhar, Imam, Babar, Rizwan, Shakeel, Iftikhar, Khushdil, Wasim, Mahmood, Afridi, Qadir
Batting a worry
Regardless of the series result, Australia have found a couple of players. Travis Head and Ben McDermott have given the selectors food for thought.
Head's emergence as an opener is a surprise and with David Warner on the wane, he could make the berth his own. McDermott could soon become a staple of both white-ball teams. Skip Aaron FInch will also feel under pressure.
It was the latter who notched a ton, following on from Head's blutz in the first. The Adelaide Striker made 89 in game two at a lick.
Arguably Australia had the platform to post 370 or 380 but Afridi's quality had a say. The Aussie bowling, as you would expect, will struggle at times barring Adam Zampa. Jason Behrendorff might get a game instead of Nathan Ellis.
Possible XI: Head, Finch, McDermott, LabuschagneStoinis, Carey, Green, Abbot, Behrendorff, Zampa.,
It's a road. There's no getting away from that. Both teams batting first have busted 300 and there have now been five centuries across the two games. Of course the markets are aware and you pay a high price to get with the batters.
There is a possible shrewd ploy, though. Neither team have much left in the tank and it might be wise to go against the flow of runs in the first innings after 20 or 25 overs. A shorting of the ruins par line would make sense. But fingers crossed it's the Aussies who bat. We want Afridi doing damage again. Bet the runs odds here
A simple trade strategy has paid off twice so far. Back Australia batting first and trade out at the break with the odds flipping.
Pakistan went off at around 1.774/5 for game two and we would expect something in similar region. That means we should get close to 2.305/4 on Australia. Laying back at 1.804/5 adding 50% of the original stage is the way to go. Bet the match odds here
Babar Azam and Imam-ul-Haq have topped in games two and one for Pakistan. On win rates they were value. The third win-rate bet was Fakhar Zama, the opener. Fakhar has been in decent touch. Could this be his time? There's nowt wrong with the XX.
For Australia, big numbers about Marcus Stoinis and Cameron Green have appeal. If they bat second we would be onside scoreboard pressure facilitating a trickier time and it's possible a rescue job may be required.