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Former Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik and Misbah-ul-Haq picked their World Cup finalists.© AFP

The knockout stage of the ongoing Cricket World Cup will get underway next week with the semi-finals on Wednesday and Thursday. While India will take on the fourth-placed team (either New Zealand or Pakistan) in the first semi-final, Australia and South Africa will square off in the second a day later. During a discussion on A Sports, former Pakistan captain Shoaib Malik and Misbah-ul-Haq picked their two finalists. While both unanimously picked India as one of the finalists, Malik and Misbah picked different teams for the other spot.

While Malik picked Australia, Misbah feels that South Africa will reach the final, with the latter also suggesting that India are much stronger than all the other teams.

“Mujhe India-Australia ka lagta hai,” Malik said.

“India-South Africa for me. All four are good teams. It’s about ki us din pe kaun se team acha khelti hai. Saare capable hain ek doosre ko harane ke, but India, in terms of overall balance dekhe is a much better team than all other teams,” Misbah added.

Former Pakistan captains @realshoaibmalik and @captainmisbahpk name their finalists for the ICC World Cup 2023 as they respond to a question in #AskThePavilion.#ASportsHD #ARYZAP #CWC23 #ThePavilion #MoinKhan #FakhreAlam #WasimAkram #SAvAFG

— ASports (@asportstvpk) November 10, 2023

New Zealand won their last league match on Thursday against Sri Lanka, ending the group stage with 10 points from nine matches.

Pakistan, on the other hand, are fifth with eight points in as many matches. They need to win their final game against England on Saturday with a big margin to topple the Kiwis from the fourth spot.

They will have to win by 287 runs if they bat first. If they chase, Pakistan will have to win with 284 balls — more than 47 overs — to spare.

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