In-Form Moeen can be Crucial for England

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The T20 series between England and Pakistan is finely poised ahead of the third and final clash at Old Trafford on Tuesday.

Moeen Ali

The T20 series between England and Pakistan hangs in the balance as they head into the third and final clash on Tuesday.

After Pakistan won a run-fest at Nottingham on Friday, the hosts bounced back in style with a 45-run victory at Headingley on Sunday and are now 20/41 favourites to win the decider at Old Trafford.

The England selectors have decided to chop and changed their line-up throughout the series, as they prepare for the T20 World Cup later in the year and that included a break for their skipper.

Morgan Eyeing T20 Runs

If he wasn’t such a good captain, you could argue that Eoin Morgan’s position in the team might be under threat after a shortage of runs in recent times.

In his last 11 T20 innings, the skipper’s highest score is just 28, although you could also argue that England’s top order is so good and consistent, that he often doesn’t get the chance to shine.

One man, though, who has worked his way back into England’s plans at just the right time is Moeen Ali, who claimed the Man of the Match award in Sunday’s win.

The all-rounder impressed with the bat, smashing a quickfire 36 from 16 balls, before taking 2-32 with the ball – claiming the key middle-order scalps of Mohammad Hafeez and Fakhar Zaman.

Moeen is 6/1 to be England’s top runscorer on Tuesday, while the Worcestershire ace is available at the same price to be the home side’s top bowler.

It’s worth noting that the last international T20 game in Manchester between these two sides saw Moeen fire 61 off 33 balls.

One of the shining lights with the ball in this and the ODI series has been Saqib Mahmood and if he plays on his home pitch, he is a tempting option at 5/2 to be England’s top wicket-taker.

Hafeez could Offer Pakistan Value

Pakistan’s openers – Babar Azam and Mohammad Rizwan – have looked brilliant in the opening two matches but others will need to chip in if they are going to take the series.

One player to watch out for is Mohammad Hafeez, who needs a big score to boost his confidence after making just 34 runs across the two games so far. At the grand old age of 40, he is looking to prove that he still has what it takes at international level and this could be the perfect opportunity for him.

Hafeez top scored with 86 at Old Trafford when helping the tourists win by five runs last September and the veteran is 9/2 to be the top Pakistan batsman on Tuesday.

In terms of the Pakistan bowling attack, it’s been a bit of a mixed bag so far and it was Imad Wasim who impressed at Headingley.

The left-arm spinner took the scalps of two of the top three – Jason Roy and Dawid Malan – and can be backed at 4/1 to be Pakistan’s top bowler in the decider.

*All odds correct at time of writing

Warren has been employed as a sport journalist for over two decades and as well as years of written experience, has also worked in other areas of the media including radio and television. Football has always been his number one passion, but has also commentated and written on a number of other sports including golf, cricket, tennis and rugby.

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