TEAM GUIDE: PAKISTAN

THE ENIGMAS...

You never quite know what you're going to get with Pakistan at major tournaments. They can look mighty undercooked going into the competition yet win it, or seem a nailed-on favourite to lift the trophy and crash and burn in spectacular fashion.

So what of the 2019 edition? Well, they have batsmen in the shape of Fakhar Zaman and Babar Azam who can be destructive throughout an innings, a captain in Sarfraz Ahmed who knows how to win in England (see 2017 Champions Trophy), an abundance of experience in Shoaib Malik and one of the most exciting fast bowling prospects of recent years in Shaheen Afridi.

There is plenty to be encouraged by as a Pakistan fan. But history tells us that absolutely anything could happen.

THE PREVIEW

THE SQUAD

THE FORM

STUTTER AND SPLUTTER

Oh it's not been a great year for Pakistan in ODI cricket. Hammered 5-0 by Australia in the UAE after drawing with New Zealand, and losing 3-2 in South Africa, their build-up ahead of the trip to England and Wales was not ideal.

PRE-WC 2019 RESULTS (most recent first):  LL-LLLLLLW

THE HISTORY

THE CLASS OF '92

The unpredictable enigma of the cricketing world, Pakistan have displayed this characteristic throughout the years and have lived up to that reputation at the World Cup.


Group-stage exits in the inaugural World Cup and in the two editions in the first decade of this century have been counterbalanced by four consecutive semi-final appearances from 1979-1992, the latter of which saw them go all the way with a 22-run victory over England at the MCG in the final.


They were no match for Australia when they lost by eight wickets in 1999 in their next and latest final appearance to date, but they threatened to make it again in 2011 and 2015 before being knocked out in the semi-final and quarter-final by eventual winners India and Australia.

WORLD CUP RECORD

1975: Group stage

1979: Semi-final

1983: Semi-final

1987: Semi-final

1992: Winners

1996: Quarter-final

1999: Runners-up

2003: Group stages

2007: Group stages

2011: Semi-final

2015: Quarter-final

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