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Cricket World Cup 2023: Pakistan

Pakistan have typically blown hot and cold in the Cricket World Cup over the years, but the current team have the potential to beat any side on their day.

Pakistan World Cup squad

Babar Azam (c), Shadab Khan, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Abdullah Shafique, Mohammad Rizwan, Saud Shakeel, Iftikhar Ahmed, Salman Ali Agha, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Afridi, Mohammad Wasim.

Pakistan World Cup coach

Clarity is at the core of what coach Grant Bradburn is trying to achieve with Pakistan.

The former New Zealand all-rounder prides himself on consistent team selection and is trying to implement an attacking style of play which has served Pakistan well in the Test format.

Bradburn was elevated into the position of head coach after Micky Arthur failed to reach an agreement with the PCB for the spot but he has since seen plenty of success with the Men in Green.

Pakistan World Cup record

1975 Group stage
1979 Semi-finals
1983 Semi-finals
1987 Semi-finals
1992 Champions
1996 Quarter-finals
1999 Runners-up
2003 Group stage
2007 Group stage
2011 Semi-finals
2015 Quarter-finals
2019 Group stage

Possible XI

1. Fakhar Zaman 
2. Imam-ul-Haq 
3. Babar Azam 
4. Mohammad Rizwan 
5. Salman Ali Agha 
6. Iftikhar Ahmed 
7. Shadab Khan 
8. Mohammad Wasim
9. Shaheen Afridi 
10. Hasan Ali 
11. Haris Rauf


In Haris Rauf, Naseem Shah and Shaheen Afridi, Pakistan boast one of the fiercest pace attacks in the world.

Afridi ranks fifth in the world ODI bowling rankings, having taken 84 wickets in the format for his country, while paceman Rauf is the highest wicket-taker for Pakistan in ODIs since 2022.

Injury scares for both Rauf and Naseem Shah during the Asia Cup were concerning but should the pair shake off any issues before the World Cup, they will be pivotal to Pakistan's success.

Although the match finished without a result, Pakistan demonstrated their skill with the ball at the start of September in the Asia Cup, skittling out India for just 266.

Conditions in India for this year's World Cup will also suit the Men in Green and their bowling attack especially.


Pakistan have generally looked in good shape in ODIs this year, claiming series wins over New Zealand and Afghanistan and impressing at the Asia Cup but their batting and their middle-order in particular has wobbled a bit of late.

In their second encounter with India in the Super Four stage of the Asia Cup, Pakistan were bowled out for just 128 when chasing 357 in Colombo with only four players making double figures in that contest.

Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq and Babar Azam make for a talented top three and coach Grant Bradburn has backed them to come good at the World Cup but if they fall early, the middle order may lack the resolve to make Pakistan competitive.

Key Players

Babar Azam

The second fastest player to 2000 ODI runs, Babar Azam is one of the most consistent batsman in world cricket and will be key to Pakistan's cause at the World Cup.

Azam is considered a progressive and attacking-minded captain and has racked up 5,380 runs in 104 ODI innings at an average of 58.47 - that is a better average than the nation's all-time leading runscorer Inzamam-ul-Haq.

With 474 runs, Azam was his country's top runscorer at a pretty underwhelming 2019 World Cup and will be hoping to go a step further in India.

Haris Rauf

Although a niggle picked up against India at the Asia Cup cast doubt over his availability for the World Cup, Rauf should be fit and ready to go after a positive MRI and the paceman is one to watch.

He has taken 39 wickets in 20 ODIs at an average of 22.64 and that streak has featured four hauls of four wickets or more.

His pace will be important in unsettling some of the world's best openers.

Shaheen Afridi

The younger brother of Riaz Afridi, who made one Test appearance for Pakistan in 2004, left-arm paceman Shaheen Afridi has emerged as a serious talent in his team's bowling department.

Afridi became the first cricketer born after the turn of the millennium when featuring for Pakistan in a T20 against the West Indies in 2018 and he is renowned for his ability to draw pace and bounce from otherwise uninspiring pitches.

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