Pakistan, Sri Lanka ODI series kicks off

The season of white-ball cricket is kicking off after a long break since the Champions Trophy final in the Oval, London.

The trophy unveiling ceremony of the Pak-Sri Lanka One Day series was held at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Thursday.

Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed and Sri Lankan Captain Upul Tharanga unveiled the trophy for five-match series at the ceremony.

The One Day International (ODI) series between the two teams will start on Friday in Dubai.

Prior to the trophy unveiling, Sarfraz said that new players have joined the squad and ‘will definitely will perform with energy’ in the one-day series.

“But we will try and get out of that. Our one-day team is balanced and our record is very good. We will have some senior players in the squad and I hope we’ll play better cricket,” he said.

Even though he feels the pressure of losing his first Test series, Sarfraz is hopeful that the team will perform better in the limited-over matches.

Sarfraz disclosed that young batsman Imam ul Haq, fast bowler Usman Shinwari, and middle order batsman Haris Sohail will not be a part of playing XI in the first ODI against Lankans.

Responding to question by Geo News, Sarfraz said that the toss would not affect the result of limited-over cricket although the dew can create an impact in Dubai. It is regular practice for the management of the Dubai stadium, however, to spray the ground to minimise the dew’s effects.

After the trophy unveiling, Tharanga expressed hope that the Lankans would play better cricket without the experienced Angelo Mathews and pacer Lasith Malinga.

Sri Lanka have dropped Lasith Malinga from the one-day international squad to face Pakistan due to his fitness and form related issues.

The remaining ODI matches are in Abu Dhabi (October 16 and 18) and Sharjah (October 20 and 23).

Pakistan’s playing XI in First ODI: Ahmed Shehzad, Fakhar Zaman, Babar Azam, Mohammad Hafeez, Shoaib Malik, Sarfraz Ahmed (capt), Imad Wasim, Shahdab Khan, Hasan Ali, Ruman Raees and Junaid Khan. (Courtesy Geo)


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