The South African cricket team will be taking on Pakistan in Match 26 of the ICC ODI World Cup 2023 on Friday, October 27 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. They have been in fantastic form in the tournament, especially the batting unit and will be keen to continue their good run in the upcoming match.
The Temba Bavuma-led team is second on the table with eight points from five matches. Their only loss this season has come against the Netherlands. Meanwhile, Pakistan is sixth on the table with two wins from five matches. They will be under immense pressure having lost their last three matches. Head-to-head, Pakistan have won 30 whereas South Africa has come out victorious on 51 occasions in ODIs.
In this article, we take a look at the key player battles for the Pakistan vs South Africa match in the ICC ODI World Cup 2023.
ICC Cricket World Cup 2023: Key Player Battles for PAK vs SA
Imam-ul-Haq vs Kagiso Rabada
Pakistan batter Imam-ul-Haq hasn’t been in the best of forms in the ongoing ICC ODI World Cup 2023. Except for the 70-run knock against Australia, he has struggled to get going. In five matches he has scored 150 runs at an average of 30 and a strike rate of 92.59. He will be up against Kagiso Rabada in the upcoming match. Rabada has dismissed Imam-ul-Haq once in ODIs, conceding just 49 runs off 87 deliveries. The South African pacer has taken 10 wickets in five matches so far in the tournament.
Quinton de Kock vs Shaheen Afridi
Quinton de Kock has taken the ICC ODI World Cup 2023 by storm with his terrific batting performance. He has been in great form for South Africa, playing a vital role at the top of the order. He has slammed three centuries in five matches and is the leading run-scorer so far. Pakistan will be hoping to dismiss Quinton de Kock at the earliest in the upcoming. They will bank on Shaheen Shah Afridi to do the job. He has dismissed the opener twice in ODIs previously, conceding 69 runs in 75 deliveries.
Babar Azam vs Keshav Maharaj
Pakistan skipper Babar Azam has not been able to convert his starts into big scores so far in the ICC ODI World Cup 2023. He has also struggled against spinners off late. In 17 ODIs, he has been dismissed 10 times by a spinner. Given his poor record, he has to be careful against Keshav Maharaj in the upcoming game. The spinner has taken 10 wickets in five matches so far in the tournament.