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T20 World Cup | Shoaib Malik hits fastest-ever fifty for Pakistan in T20I history

Shoaib Malik was at his lethal best on Sunday night against Scotland in their last Super 12 game at the T20 World Cup 2021. Coming into the crease in the 16th over, Malik found Pakistan in need of acceleration. From 112-3 in 15 overs, Malik’s belligerent attack took Pakistan upto 189 runs for the loss of four wickets in their registered 20 overs. 

The right-hander hit only a single four and 6 sixes, five of which came in the last two overs as he reached his fifty in only 18 balls, the fastest ever for Pakistan. He broke the previous record of 22 ball fifty held by Umar Akmal. This is also the joint-fastest fifty in this edition of the World Cup as he equalled India's KL Rahul’s 18-ball fifty record which was also incidentally achieved against Scotland. 

Courtesy of this fifty from Malik, which is his ninth in 121 T20I games, Pakistan managed to reach 189 in their 20 overs, scoring 67 off the last 24 balls. Malik, 39 is also one of the oldest to hit an international T20 fifty. Apart from Malik, Babar Azam also hit a fifty in the game and he also equalled a record for most fifty in one edition of the T20 World Cup, achieved jointly by Virat Kohli and Matthew Hayden in different World Cups. 

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T20 World Cup | Bruised India look to test bench strength as Namibia aim to add insult to injury

So the World Cup’s group stage is finally coming to an end and it might not be the right way to end with a non-impact game as the result of this game won’t matter to anyone anywhere apart from the two teams involved in this game. While at one end there is India who have got literally nothing to play for apart from the fact that they can test their bench strength and give a somewhat accommodative farewell to Virat Kohli in his last game as the blue brigade’s T20I skipper. On the other end, there is Namibia who have everything to play for and end what has been their best-ever showing on a world stage. What's at stake? For India, there is obviously pride to play for. And along with it, there is also the opportunity to let the likes of Rahul Chahar have an experience of seeing what it is like to play in a World Cup. Other than that, Virat Kohli, who hasn’t really had a great outing with the bat so far can also promote himself as there is no burden of net run rate now. Playing freely should be the idea that team India could incorporate. For Namibia, there could be a no bigger opportunity than this one to show what they are made of. They did well against New Zealand and Pakistan and even won a Super 12 game by beating Scotland. If they have an impressive outing against India, which is not necessarily a win, but just to have great moments, it will go a long way in giving them the belief that they could do well. What needs to change? As far as India are concerned they would like to finish the game as soon as possible but that wouldn’t be at the cost of not giving youngsters such as Ishan Kishan and Rahul Chahar a chance to play. This match is dead by all means for India and they wouldn’t be losing anyways so why not give young players a feel of what it is like to play at the biggest event of them all. For Namibia, it would once again come down to their batting. The bowling of the team has been brilliant apart from the death overs against New Zealand in their last game, but it is the batting that has disappointed. In the first round, it was the batting of the likes of skipper Gerhard Erasmus and experienced David Wiese that got the team through in two tough games against Ireland and Netherlands and even in the Super 12 against Scotland. But since then the two players have not been able to get going and in the last match, it would only be fitting that they go all out with the bat. India vs Namibia: Match Details Match Number - 42 Date and Time: November 08, 2021, 07:30 pm IST, 06:00 pm Local, 02:00 pm GMT Venue: Dubai International Cricket Stadium, Dubai Broadcast and Livestream: Star Sports and Hotstar Pitch Report The pitch at Dubai has overtime shown that it has some help for spinners early on, but as it gets wet in the second innings, there is literally nothing that the bowling unit can do and prevent a team from chasing down the total. Thus dew becomes a very undue advantage for the team batting second. Weather Forecast The temperature at the stadium will fall from 28-degree Celsius at 06:00 pm to 25-degree Celsius by 10:00 pm and similarly, the humidity will increase from 51% to 65%. With such a huge amount of humidity, heavy dew is expected as well. Team News India The Indian team can rest Rohit Sharma and Ravichandran Ashwin for this game and give Ishan Kishan and Rahul Chahar a chance. Probable XI KL Rahul, Ishan Kishan, Virat Kohli (c), Suryakumar Yadav, Rishabh Pant (wk), Hardik Pandya, Ravindra Jadeja, Rahul Chahar, Varun Chakravarthy, Mohammed Shami, Jasprit Bumrah Namibia Namibia can bring back Jan Frylick who is a sure shot all-rounder and as an experienced member of the team, he would be looking to play such a big game as this. Probable XI Stephan Baard, Craig Williams, Gerhard Erasmus (c), David Wiese, JJ Smit, Zane Green (wk), Michael van Lingen, Jan Frylinck, Jan Nicol Loftie-Eaton, Ruben Trumpelmann, Bernard Scholtz CE XI Fantasy team Wicketkeepers Ishan Kishan Batters KL Rahul, Virat Kohli, Suryakumar Yadav, Gerhard Erasmus All-rounders Ravindra Jadeja, David Wiese, JJ Smit Bowlers Rahul Chahar, Jasprit Bumrah, Ruben Trumpelmann Vice-Captain Ravindra Jadeja Captain KL Rahul