Afghanistan defeated Scotland in Sharjah
Afghanistan defeated Scotland in Sharjah Image Credit: ANI

Afghanistan had an easy win over Scotland last time out but now they face a stiffer challenge as they take on an in-form Pakistan team in Dubai on Friday for their second Super 12 match in Group 2.

Pakistan have their tails up with two wins out of two against India in Dubai and New Zealand in Sharjah. They looked dominant in both the games, with Shaheen Shah Afridi leading the bowling attack in the first game and Harris Rauf in the second. Their batting also looks sorted with captain Babar Azam leading from the front and Mohammed Rizwan being his ideal partner providing the right impetus. In their previous last game against Kiwis, when things got a bit tight, the calmness and experience of Shoaib Malik saw them through.

Pakistan's players celebrate win over New Zealand at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium
Pakistan's players celebrate win over New Zealand at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium Image Credit: AFP

Afghanistan will have their work cut out against Pakistan but have trio of spinners with Mujeeb Rehman, who picked up five wickets in the last game against Scotland, as well as Rashid Khan looking good too. In captain Mohammad Nabi they have a leader who is dangerous with the bat and ball. In Hazratulla Zazai they have a destructive left-hander who had tore into the Scotland attack. Also on his day opening partner Mohammed Shehzad can be devastating.

It should be a good match between one with a lot of experience and one that can surprise the opposition with fearless play. If Pakistan win, they will surely be assured of a place in the semi-finals with their last two games against with Scotland and Namibia. If Afghanistan claim victory Pakistan, this group will be wide open.