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ICC World Cup 2019: Warm-Up Match 8, England vs Afghanistan, Preview – Can the Asian dark horses pull off another upset?

It will definitely come down to a battle of will, although the hosts are a little too strong for Afghanistan's liking.

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Noor Ali Zadran
Noor Ali Zadran. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Two teams with contrasting styles of playing, England and Afghanistan, will capture a lot of attention when they face off in what will be the second warm-up game for both. This will not be smooth sailing for England, who just lost a hard-fought game against Australia and Afghanistan on the side, have registered a huge win against Pakistan.

In the last 16 games they batted second, England managed to chase down totals successfully on all the occasions in international cricket. This emphasizes how successful they have been in this format in the last couple of years and sends a threatening message to all the other teams. Yet, there are still some doubts being raised as experts reckon they haven’t been tested properly against high-quality bowling attacks.

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It will definitely come down to a battle of will, although the hosts are a little too strong for Afghanistan‘s liking. The only facet in an opposition that has kept England on the backfoot is a good bowling lineup, something which Afghanistan is already blessed with. If they can do their bit with the ball, which won’t be very easy, we could witness another massive upset.

Playing Combinations

England

It’ll be interesting to see if one among Bairstow or Roy will be rested with Vince getting a shot to open for this game. Joe Root is expected to bat this game whilst there is no update regarding Adil Rashid and Eoin Morgan as yet. Jofra Archer came out to bat towards the end and didn’t seem comfortable whilst Mark Wood too had picked up a niggle, which comes in as a worry for the hosts.

Squad: Eoin Morgan (c), Jason Roy, Joe Root, James Vince, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Tom Curran, Liam Dawson, Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler (wk), Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood.

Afghanistan

Whilst Rashid Khan and Mohammad Nabi had an outstanding game, Mujeeb Ur Rahman struggled with the ball and he will get a lot of overs in this game. Hazratullah Zazai picked up some form in the last game and he would want to build something bigger in the coming games. Rahmat Shah and Hashmatullah Shahidi were brilliant with the bat and if they can stitch another good performance, they could pose a challenge.

Squad: Noor Ali Zadran, Hazratullah Zazai, Asghar Afghan, Hashmatullah Zazai, Najibullah Zadran, Rahmat Shah, Samiullah Shenwari, Gulbadin Naib (c), Mohammad Nabi, Mohammad Shahzad (wk), Rashid Khan, Dawlat Zadran, Aftab Alam, Hamid Hassan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman.

Focus will be on

James Vince (England)

Just when experts were trying to search loopholes in this strong English juggernaut, they thought the back up opening option in James Vince might not render great relevance. Yet, the 28-year-old chipped in with a brilliant fifty against the Aussies and showed great composure. Bench strength is always an underrated weapon and he will be getting another go at the number 3 spot just to boost his confidence further.

Mohammad Nabi (Afghanistan)

Mohammad Nabi continues to remind people the significance of a quality, experienced all-rounder in a side. The Afghan stalwart chipped in with a sensational spell against Pakistan and backed it with a fantastic cameo. If their country expects to paint a pretty picture in this World Cup, Nabi is their most important artist and if he can combine his skill and experience to good effect, Afghanistan will always alive in the game.

Head to head

Matches Played – 2 | Afghanistan won- 0 | England won – 2

Broadcasting details

TV – Star Sports 1, Star Sports 1 HD

Live Stream – Hotstar.

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