Pakistan eased to a 6-wicket win with 27 balls to spare in their warm-up match against South Africa at The Oval on Monday. It was a poor batting display from the Proteas as they slipped to a hopeless 83 for 7 in 22 overs after being asked to bat first by Misbah-ul-Haq.
Australia may be the defending champions in the ICC Champions Trophy, but that doesn’t make them favourites by any means. A lot has changed since the last edition of the event that took place back in 2009-10.
True, one shouldn’t read too much into a warm-up tie as it is nothing more than an opportunity for the teams to acclimatise themselves to the conditions. At the same time, it is also a fact that sides do get a chance to figure out their strengths and weaknesses in the given atmosphere.
Virat Kohli and Dinesh Karthik scored superb centuries to help India overhaul a massive target of 334 in their warm-up match against Sri Lanka at Birmingham. Kohli scored 144 from 120 balls with 11 fours and 3 sixes to set up India’s run chase.
Pakistan have always been an unpredictable side, and the case will be no different when they head into the Champions Trophy. As always, Pakistan are going into a tournament with a naturally talented squad.
The Kiwis would not head into the events as one of favourites since their squad has been in a rebuilding phase for a while now. This is in stark contrast to the earlier editions, whey they had the players to trouble the best side in the world.