Australia vs. Pakistan Prediction and Preview

Australia vs. Pakistan Prediction and Preview
by Kristina Newsam, MyCricketHighlights Writer

It's time for the Australia vs Pakistan prediction! It's a chance for the underdogs to prove themselves worthy champions. A chance also for the home-ground heroes to stamp their seal of authority for a fourth showing against Pakistan in Australia, as they both face off in their fourth series against each other in the land of the Kangaroos.

As Australia revel in their 2-0 lead over New Zealand in the three-match ODI tournament, Pakistan enter this 5-day test off the back of a sour defeat against South Africa still producing an awful aftertaste in their mouths.

These, coupled with several crucial factors, ought to be considered in establishing a sound and fair prediction as to the likely outcome of this approaching Test series.

Winning in Australia

Home-ground advantage is not a factor that ought to be trivialised when assessing the prospects of one team's victory over another. The air of comfort, patriotic pride and overall familiarity with a particular ground are elements that often rule in favour of the home-grown warriors that take the pitch.

Furthermore, the odds of Pakistan winning in Australia seem remote, as they have not done so since December 4, 1995. Since that date, they have played 9 test matches in Australia, losing them with three whitewashes. The question lingers as to how they will overcome this negative streak that lingers in the minds of players and fans.

However, Pakistan do have in their favour that they are poised just below Australia in the test rankings, with just under 1000 points separating the third and fourth place holders according to the ICC's tabulations. Thus, how much Australia vs Pakistan score throughout this test could do much to limit or increase the gap between the two teams.

Pace vs Spin

Also, whether the spin of Pakistan works its magic on these hard Australian wickets will be a question to be answered during this Test. A mega-showdown between Australia's pace and Pakistan's spin promise to be one of the most climatic deciders of victory.

The spin of Yasir Shah was noticeably absent from the Pakistan camp when they faced South Africa last, emphasising the debilitating impact that a lack of tactical slow-arm bowling can have on their overall performance. However, when he does show up, it usually spells danger for opponents without the requisite skills to manoeuvre around such deliveries.

A man that is called for such a task as that would have been top-order batsman, Shaun Marsh for the Australians. However, Marsh has been battling with a grave finger fracture from which he has yet to recover. This serves as a huge blow to Australia's batting order, as he is renowned for his good technique when facing spin.

On the other hand, Australia still pose the challenge of their fiery pace, headed by left-arm fast bowler, Mitchell Starc, whose selection has been faced with considerable controversy in view of his high injury risk medical status. Australia rely heavily on Starc, who has had played a strong part in many a team victory even since his return in November. Many Australian fans will be on the edge of their seat to watch the Australia vs Pakistan live match online to finally resolve issues like this.

Losing to South Africa

It is to be noted that both teams have faced losses to South Africa in recent times and, as such, have strong reason to want to summon the courage to bask in the glory of a redemptive victory after defeat. However, only one can emerge in this Australia vs Pakistan head-to-head match-up.

Australia have shown a greater track record of recovery and being on the path to this victory of victories through their win against New Zealand in two out of three of the ODIs against them, with the third remaining to be played on December 9, 2016.

On the other hand, Pakistan have not experienced a similar recent victory, but still have the indelible defeat ingrained into their psyches. This factor can either make or break the chances of a team, as they can either approach the challenge with an insatiable hunger or cower in fear that they will repeat the same mistakes.

Experience vs Youthful Exuberance

As it concerns age, it is clear that the disparity in the lineup with Australia vs Pakistan highlights that Pakistan treasure the value of experience and measured resilience to help strengthen their core and bring depth to their plan of action. The team is still balanced with a few "young guns", such as Babar Azam and Sami Aslam.

Experience can work in favour of Pakistan as it concerns good shot-selection, patience and overall understanding of the adjustments that need to be made based on pitch and the length and line of the ball delivered. However, it remains to be proven whether "experience" will be able to stand up to the test of continuous, arduous play or whether they will expire much quicker than the youngsters of Australia, who will be able to recover faster to endure longer.

It is important to note, nonetheless, that if good shot selection is not exercised by the young players of Australia, such as the skipper himself, Steve Smith, and others such as Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood, then they will not be around long enough to make a difference.

Therefore, excitement is at its peak to watch Australia vs Pakistan live, as each team has to weigh its strengths and weaknesses carefully as they strategise how to counteract the approach of their opponents, so as to overcome the odds one way or the other.

Be sure to visit mycrickethighlights to catch the latest updates on the scintillating matches in this Test series!

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