NewsPakistan’s T20 World Cup preparations hit by rain

Pakistan’s T20 World Cup preparations hit by rain

Pakistan’s first-ever training session in the United States was curtailed because of a downpour on Sunday.

The team could only muster fielding practice and physical drills in the shortened session at the Grand Prairie Stadium, where they play their tournament opener against the USA.

The team is scheduled to travel on late Tuesday afternoon, and the bowlers and batters will hope to get some net sessions under their belt in newer surroundings.

Pakistan arrived in the US in two groups on 31 May and the side had opted to rest in the last two days to recuperate from the long travel from England.

They remained in Europe throughout May for seven T20Is in Ireland and England. The results, however, largely remained unfavorable to Pakistan.

They won the last two of the three matches against Ireland after being on the end of a shocking defeat in the first match and lost two completed matches against England, with the other two being washed out.

Pakistan have won only eight matches out of 23 in this T20 World Cup cycle and only five from 14 in 2024, which underscores that their lead-up to the tournament has been far from ideal.

There are concerns about the efficacy of Pakistan’s powerplay and spin bowling. Pakistan pacers, of late, have given away heaps of runs in the first six overs and conceded a record 78 against England at The Oval in the last match. In the spin department, their mystery spinner Abrar Ahmed has not played since April, and Shadab Khan’s form has plummeted.

They were forced to bring back Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan as openers after their patience with Saim Ayub ran out. The young left-hander had been promoted up the order at the start of 2024 to add flair but has failed in that role. Pakistan’s middle order has also failed to leave an impression of late, which further adds to their woes.

The team has also been hit with off-field distractions. Babar Azam was reinstated as Pakistan captain only in April and their new head coach, Gary Kirsten, joined the side just some weeks out of the all-important tournament.

Pakistan play the USA – who opened their campaign and tournament with a stunning win over Canada in a high-scoring match at the same venue – on Thursday.

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