After the 2-0 series victory by Pakistan over England in the UAE, the two sides begin a four game ODI series on Wednesday

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The games are as follows:

  • · Wed Nov 11 1st ODI – England v Pakistan Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
  • · Fri Nov 13 2nd ODI – England v Pakistan Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
  • · Tue Nov 17 3rd ODI – England v Pakistan Sharjah Cricket Stadium
  • · Fri Nov 20 4th ODI – England v Pakistan Dubai International Cricket Stadium

England’s squad, captained by Eoin Morgan, contains several member of the test side augmented by new arrivals who featured throughout the England side in the shorter format of the game through the Ashes summer such as Willey, Roy, Hales and Billings. Many of these players lack experience of these conditions, which could be crucial for what may turn out to be a learning experience first and foremost for a young side.

During the Test series England had four stand-out performers. Cook and Root with the bat (450 and 287 runs respectively) and Anderson and Broad with the ball (20 wickets combined). From these four stand-out players only Root plays in this ODI series

Apart from these four players the major challenge for England here will be in batting depth and in the performances of their spinners. In the test series the highest scoring player who plays the ODI was Bairstow with 134 runs. Meanwhile the spinners’ performance paled in comparison with the quicker bowlers

The pace-men took 31 wickets at 24.5 with a run rate of 2.29. The spinners 20 wickets at 59.8 and a run rate of 4.07 It is the England bowling line up (likely to be combinations of Plunkett, Woakes, Jordan, Willey, Ali, Rashid) that especially looks like it will struggle to me in these conditions.

Meanwhile apart from test captain Misbah-ul-Haq the Pakistan side for this series is full of their best performers notably including leg-spinner Yasir Shah who took 15 wickets in the two tests he played and Wahab Riaz who blew England away in the second test.

So this is a major challenge for England, playing in conditions that do not suit their strengths with a far less experienced team than their opponents

Series odds have Pakistan Evens (William Hill), the Draw 5/2 (Betfred) and England 7/2 (Skybet) for a four game series. Not only do I like Pakistan at Evens, but I think Pakistan should be odds-on, and the 7/4 offered by Bet365 and William Hill on a 3-1 series correct score looks a sensible bet to me

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