Pakistan Take On Ireland In Must-Win Clash Tomorrow

14/03/2015 12:20 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST
FILE- In this Wednesday, June 4, 2014 file photo, Misbah-ul-Haq, Pakistani cricket team skipper speaks to reporters in Lahore, Pakistan. Suspensions and injuries to key players have taken a chunk out of Pakistan's bowling stocks for the World Cup, meaning the 1992 champions will rely heavily on the likes of seasoned campaigners like Misbah-ul-Haq again.(AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary, file)

Adelaide — An unpredictable Pakistan will take on giant-killers Ireland in a must-win pool B encounter of the ICC cricket World Cup here tomorrow.

The winner of the final league match of the group stage will move into the quarter-finals while the loser will have to engage in a run-rate battle with West Indies.

A likely win for West Indies against the UAE, in the first game tomorrow, will bring them level with Pakistan and Ireland on six points to set up a close finish for the final-eight spots.

With defending champions India and South Africa already taking up the first two spots in the table, co-hosts Australia and New Zealand have also qualified from pool A alongwith Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

Memories of the 2007 World Cup exit will certainly resurface in the Pakistan dressing room as they take on the Irish side nearly eight years after they lost to the minnows at Kingston's Sabina Park in Jamaica on March 17.

The match not only marked the end of the road for the Inzamam-ul-Haq-led side in the 50-over showpiece event but also for coach Bob Woolmer, who was tragically found dead in his hotel room a day after the loss.

Since then the two sides have played four ODIs against each other with Pakistan winning three and the fourth game ending in a tie.

Even in this edition, the two sides have had a rather patchy run in the league stage winning three each of their respective five matches and are locked on six points.

Pakistan started on the wrong foot by losing to India and then West Indies, but the Misbah-ul-Haq-led side bounced back with three comeback wins against Zimbabwe, UAE and South Africa - the last being the most impressive.

Ireland, on the other hand, started off smoothly against West Indies when they chased down their 305-run target with ease and also got past UAE and Zimbabwe.

But the William Porterfield-led side proved no match to India and South Africa. But the Irish batsmen have certainly displayed better numbers than the maverick Pakistan batting order.

More On This Topic