Sean Williams opted to chase against Pakistan on a surface that he expected to flatten out in the afternoon
Zimbabwe chose to bowl v Pakistan
Sean Williams opted to chase against Pakistan on a surface that he expected to flatten out in the afternoon in the series opener. Zimbabwe had a new opening pair after Brendan Taylor was ruled out with illness. Wesley Madhevere will play his first T20I at home and partner Tinashe Kamunhukamwe at the top.
Zimbabwe handed out one new cap to batsman Tadiwanashe Marumani, who was the second-leading run-scorer in the recently completed T20 cup, and will bat No.3. Experience made up the middle order with Craig Ervine back after missing the series against Afghanistan. The team also included Sean Williams and Ryan Burl in at No.6. Their attack included three quicks and left-arm spinner Wellington Masakadza.
Pakistan included two specialist spinners in Mohammad Nawaz and Usman Qadir, who was left out of the final match in South Africa. They also had three seamers at their disposal although Shaheen Shah Afridi was not one of them. Mohammad Hasnain came back into the XI alongside Haris Rauf and Faheem Ashraf.
Like Zimbabwe, Pakistan had one newcomer in the batting line-up. Danish Aziz, who made his ODI debut in South Africa, will play his first T20I and bolster a middle-order that Pakistan are looking to firm up.
Pakistan (possible): 1 Mohammad Rizwan (wk) 2 Babar Azam (capt), 3 Fakhar Zaman 4 Mohammad Hafeez, 5 Haidar Ali, 6 Danish Aziz, 7 Faheem Ashraf, 8 Mohammad Nawaz, 9 Usman Qadir, 10 Mohammad Hasnain, 11 Haris Rauf
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo’s South Africa correspondent