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Pakistan Cricket Team Three Times Beat Netherlands Cricket Team In ODI Series
Scott Edwards'men hasn't won an international game since beating the United States by seven wickets in the semi-finals of the World T20 qualifier. Ever since the memorable win, the Netherlands lost the WT20 qualifier final to Zimbabwe before losing the two-match T20 series to New Zealand.
This is the final game for the Dutch before they fly to Australia for the group stages of the World T20.
On the other hand, Pakistan has put together a good run in the ODIs recently. They have won seven consecutive ODI games since losing the first ODI of the three-match series against Australia on March 29.
Babar Azam's unit won the last two ODI games against the Aussies before securing a clean sweep against the West Indies in the three-match ODI series in June.
As they have already clinched the series against the Dutch, they would hope to go into the Asia Cup on a winning note.
Story Of Pakistan Vs Netherlands Series So Far
Even though the records will say that Pakistan leads the series 3-0, it has been anything but straightforward for the Men in Green. The hosts deserve praise for the fight they showed in the first ODI.
The Netherlands cricket team bowlers didn't do well as Pakistan put up a challenging target of 315. However, the home side put up a valiant effort during their chase as they took the game to the Pakistanis till the last over.
At one stage, it looked like the target was within Netherlands' reach. They ultimately were 16 runs short of victory.
The second ODI was a match without much drama as Pakistan eased past the hosts without getting out of second gear. After a good recovery despite losing early wickets, the Netherlands were bowled out for 186 runs.
Even though Imam Ul Haq and Fakhar Zaman were dismissed in the first four overs, the visitors completed the chase with over 16 overs to spare, thanks to half-centuries from Azam, Mohammad Rizwan, and Agha Salman.
Netherlands Cricket Team Key Players
Despite the resistance shown by the Netherlands in the first ODI, there hasn't been much to cheer for the home side. However, they can consider Tom Cooper as the lone shining light in their current series.
Despite being at the twilight of his career, Cooper has shown once again how difficult it will be for the Netherlands to find his replacement.
In the two ODIs, the 35-year-old has scored 131 runs at an average of 65.50 and a strike rate of 102.34. He was extremely important to Netherlands' first ODI heroics against Pakistan, where they came agonizingly close to an upset.
With 65 and 66 runs in the first two ODIs respectively, Cooper would be trying to continue his good batting form going into the 3rd ODI.
Speaking about quality batting form, you will not find a better ODI batsman today than Azam. It has been quite an evolution shown by the Karachi Kings skipper ever since he became the Pakistani captain.
Many pundits suggested that there were better leaders than Azam in the team and that he would see a decline in his batting form after taking the captaincy role. However, not only has he rubbished all those claims, he has improved his batting numbers and led his team from the front on numerous occasions.
After clinching the T20 and ODI rankings in 2021, the right-handed batsman has continued his good form across all formats in 2022.
In the last eight ODIs he has played, the Pakistani skipper has scored three centuries and four half-centuries. With the high standards he has set, he would be disappointed not to get a ton so far in the series against the Netherlands.
Just like Cooper for the Dutch, Azam has scored 131 runs in two matches of this series with a strike rate of 87.33. He created a match-winning partnership with Zaman in the first ODI before calming the situation after both of the Pakistani openers got out early in the 2nd ODI series.
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