ENG vs PAK T20: England will host Babar Azam’s Pakistan in a three-month T20I series in what will be the final leg of the tour before both teams go their separate ways. The hosts have several of their A-listers including captain Eoin Morgan and Jonny Bairstow returning for the T20 series after they completed their quarantine following a COVID-19 scare. Nonetheless, England have rewarded the likes of Saqib Mahmood and Lewis Gregory for their performances in the ODI series and have been subsequently retained. Pakistan will also see the likes of Sharjeel Khan and Mohammad Hafeez return as they look to bounce in style.
Insidesport.co looks at five players who could make a mark in the upcoming ENG vs PAK T20 series
ENG vs PAK T20: Saqib Mahmood (England): With nine wickets in three games at an economy of less than five, Saqib Mahmood was rewarded for his performances and included in the England squad for the T20I series. Mahmood was named Player of the Series and has a chance to make a claim for a spot in the T20 World Cup squad. The fast bowler has average numbers when it comes to international T20s, with an economy over 10 in his six games so far, and the 24-year-old will hope to put in a better showing against Pakistan.
ENG vs PAK T20: Sharjeel Khan (Pakistan): Sharjeel Khan comes into the squad after an impressive PSL campaign, but the 31-year-old has been under a lot of criticism for his fitness and batting. The swashbuckling opener will look to answer his critics when he takes the field against England and build on his recent form and make it to the T20 World Cup squad. Sharjeel Khan on his day can be destructive at could settle the game single-handedly, and Pakistan would hope that he can do it more often during the upcoming England series.
ENG vs PAK T20: Lewis Gregory (England): Another one of England’s stars from the ODI series, Lewis Gregory will be one of the key components of the team especially in the absence of Ben Stokes and Sam Curran. Gregory scored a scintillating 77 in the final ODI in a crunch run chase and also chipped in with four wickets in the series, proving his utility. The 29-year-old’s ability to score quickly at the death will be valued with Eoin Morgan looking to find a finisher in his side.
ENG vs PAK T20: Mohammad Rizwan (Pakistan): Mohammad Rizwan was among the only two players to score 500 runs in the PSL season along with Babar Azam as he led his Multan side to the title. The wicket-keeper has been in fine form across all formats of the game, and scored a brisk 74 in the final ODI, stitching a mammoth partnership with Azam to put his side in command. Rizwan’s ability to score quickly as well as stitch partnerships make him a key fixture in the Pakistan middle order, and he would look to add to his impressive T20I tally, where he averages more than 44.
ENG vs PAK T20: Jonny Bairstow (England): With Jason Roy and Jos Buttler set at the top of the order, Jonny Bairstow has his work cut out to make the No.4 berth his own in this England. Bairstow is a destructive batsman who could quickly change the course of the game, but with the competition for places in the side being intense, the Sunrisers Hyderabad star will need to have a good outing to cast away all doubts.