As the cricketing giants, Australia and Pakistan, prepare to lock horns in the third and final Test of the series at the iconic Sydney Cricket Ground, fans can expect a riveting battle that goes beyond the statistics. With Australia already securing a 2-0 lead in the series, the final Test serves as a stage for pride and redemption for Pakistan.
|Pakistan tour of Australia, 2023-24
|Sydney Cricket Ground, Moore Park, Australia
|Date & Time
|03 January 2024, 05:00
Australia enters the final Test with confidence riding high, thanks to their impressive 79-run victory in the second Test. Captain Pat Cummins showcased exceptional leadership, delivering a ten-wicket haul and steering his team towards a series win. The home side will aim to maintain their high standards in both batting and bowling to seal the series with a clean sweep.
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The Australian team management will be eager to maintain the high standards set in the previous Tests. With the series already in the bag, there might be tactical changes, including the possibility of introducing Scott Boland in place of Mitchell Starc, who could be rested for the dead rubber.
In the batting department, Australia will rely on the seasoned trio of David Warner, Usman Khawaja, and Steve Smith, along with the in-form Mitchell Marsh and Marnus Labuschagne, to anchor the innings.
On the bowling front, the formidable quartet of Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Scott Boland, and Nathan Lyon will be tasked with delivering crucial breakthroughs.
Pakistan’s Redemption Quest:
On the flip side, Pakistan faces disappointment after falling short in the first two Tests. Skipper Shan Masood will be eager to witness a much-improved performance from his team in the final Test. The inclusion of leg-spinner Abrar Ahmed might add a spin dimension to the team, as Sydney’s pitch traditionally aids slower bowlers.
Pakistan’s batting unit, led by the experienced Shan Masood, Abdullah Shafique, and the middle-order trio of Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan, and Saud Shakeel, holds the key to posting a competitive total. Learning from the missed opportunities in the previous Tests, the visitors aim to put the Australian bowlers under pressure.
The bowling department, spearheaded by Mir Hamza, Abrar Ahmed, Shaheen Afridi, and Aamer Jamal, will be entrusted with the task of providing crucial breakthroughs. With Sydney known for assisting spinners, Abrar Ahmed’s inclusion could prove to be a strategic move for Pakistan.
Probable Playing XI
|Australia Predicted Playing XI
|Pakistan Predicted Playing XI
|Pat Cummins (c)
|Shan Masood (captain)
|Alex Carey (wk)
|Mohammad Rizwan (wk)
|Mitchell Starc/Scott Boland (subject to selection decision)
|Hasan Ali/Abrar Ahmed (subject to selection decision)
The wicket prepared for the game is expected to favor the batsmen, promising a high-scoring affair. However, bowlers will face a tough challenge on this surface. The weather forecast adds an interesting element, with light rain showers anticipated on the first three days of the match.
The historic Sydney Cricket Ground, steeped in cricketing lore, is the chosen battleground for the series finale. Australia draws confidence from a remarkable record, having won their previous three Test matches against Pakistan at this iconic venue.
Toss: To Bowl:
Winning the toss becomes crucial, and both teams will be eager to exploit the conditions by opting to bowl first. The strategy is clear – restrict the opposition to less than 250 runs. The SCG has seen an average first-inning score of 319 runs, emphasizing the importance of a disciplined bowling performance.
AUS vs PAK: Winning Prediction:
Australia enters the match with the upper hand, having comfortably won the first two encounters of the series. Captain Pat Cummins aims to extend the winning streak at the SCG, maintaining the team’s dominance.
Pakistan, facing a series sweep, will need to make strategic changes to their playing XI and deliver a solid batting performance to salvage a positive result in this dead rubber.
Prediction: Australia Will Win
In conclusion, the prediction leans toward Australia clinching the match and completing a comprehensive series sweep. The home side’s formidable form and historical success at the SCG make them the favorites to emerge victorious in this final encounter.
As the cricketing world awaits the drama to unfold at the Sydney Cricket Ground, fans can anticipate an enthralling battle between bat and ball, marking the culmination of an intriguing Test series.