Chance for Shaheen Afridi to make his mark and other talking points ahead of Scotland-Pakistan T20I series

Waseem Ahmed 17:52 11/06/2018
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Shaheen Afridi. Image - PSL/Twitter.

Just two days after Scotland pulled off a most famous win at Edinburgh, they will take on Pakistan in the first of the two-match T20I series on Tuesday.

Incredible scenes were witnessed at Grange Cricket Club on Sunday as Scotland recorded a remarkable six-run win over England in the one-off ODI, their biggest result in their cricketing history.

With those scenes fresh in mind, we take a look at the key talking points as Sarfraz Ahmed’s Pakistan come calling at Edinburgh.

CHANCE FOR SCOTLAND TO SPRING ANOTHER SURPRISE

When England visited the Grange Cricket Club on Sunday, they came in as the No1 ranked ODI team in the world. That counted for nothing in the end as Eoin Morgan’s men were left searching for answers as Kyle Coetzer and his Scotsmen celebrated a win that will be remembered for a very long time.

Now, the Grant Bradburn-coached Scotland team will turn their sights on toppling the No1 ranked T20I team in the world. With momentum on their side, there is every chance that Scotland could add another giant scalp to their kitty.

The two sides have met only once previously in the format when Pakistan emerged victorious by 51 runs in the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 in 2007.

Scotland can claim the scamp of another No1 ranked team.

Scotland will look to stun another No1 ranked team.

OPPORTUNITY FOR SHAHEEN AFRIDI TO MAKE HIS MARK

The two T20Is will mark the culmination of Pakistan’s extended tour of Ireland, England and Scotland. It has been a largely successful campaign for Sarfraz and his men who beat Ireland in the one-off Test at Dublin before holding England to a 1-1 draw in the two-match series.

They will now switch their attention to white-ball cricket with several youngsters who will be itching to make their mark in the series. One of them will be 18-year-old Shaheen Shah Afridi who has been earmarked as one of the hottest pace prospects in the country after a sensational campaign in the ICC U19 World Cup at the start of the year.

The left-arm pacer then impressed in his maiden PSL campaign before behind handed his T20I debut for Pakistan against the West Indies in April. The youngster has already spoken about wanting to use the series as a launch pad for his Pakistan career and he will definitely be one to keep an eye on come Tuesday.

Afridi has been earmarked as a future superstar.

Afridi has been earmarked as a future superstar.

RUNS EXPECTED TO FLOW AGAIN

Sunday’s ODI at Edinburgh saw a total of 736 runs scored as the boundaries flowed. A lightening quick outfield coupled with a short boundaries and an absolute road of a pitch meant that boundaries flowed at the Grange Cricket Club.

The crowd on Tuesday can expect similar entertainment with the pitch expected to play the same. There is plenty of firepower in the batting department of both teams.

While Scotland’s unbeaten century hero Calum MacLeod took most of the plaudits and deservedlyso, the likes of Coetzer, Matt Cross, George Munsey and Richie Berrington all chipped in with valuable contributions and are looking in good form.

On the other hand, Pakistan have the likes of Fakhar Zaman, Shoaib Malik, Hussain Talat and Haris Sohail in their strong batting unit so expect the bowlers to suffer again on Tuesday.

Batsmen should be able to make merry once again on Tuesday.

Batsmen should be on top again on Tuesday.

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