How Pakistan will win
There is no doubt that Pakistan has holes in their line up, and that at any stage the whole team could self combust into flames, even if Ross Taylor isn’t involved.
Looking at Pakistan in any sort of structured way is like trying to prove ghosts exist by looking at three episodes of most haunted.
Pakistan can win because Shahid Afridi is currently walking around oozing cocaine and champagne out of every orifice when he bowls.
Sometimes all you need is a leader who is so cock sure of himself that everyone else just assumes he can walk on water.
While Ian Chappell might not see the beauty of Afridi, the Pakistan players seem to.
Chappell likes things regimented and tough, he would have excelled in World War 2, but Afridi is guerilla warfare and Chappell’s segmented brain can’t process the many levels of awesomeness that are attacking him when Afridi is on fire.
Shahid Afridi can win this tournament, he might need some help, but in his mind he probably has 11 personalities that he can bring together to win the world cup on his own.
It’s even possible that in his head he’s already won this tournament and we just don’t know it.
Afridi does exist on many planes at once, even when he doesn’t make any runs.
What Pakistan must do
Ride the Afridi love wand.
How Pakistan can lose
Perhaps Afridi has used all his mojo. It’s possible, even though his mojo seems bottomless. His mojo can also be spent on other things at time leaving his cricket limp and lifeless.
The rest of team is not horrible, it’s just that the rest of the team seems to be made of tissue paper not human flesh.
If Afridi does run out of magic bowling beans it’s hard to see how Pakistan can win the last two games.
They have other players, their middle order was both born in the age of enlightenment, and Umar Gul is a far better bowler than his sideburns show, I just don’t see how they win if Afridi isn’t taking wickets, raising his arms in the air and moving his head from side to side like the world’s most eager puppy waiting for a treat.
But they’re Pakistan, so speculation about what will and won’t happen is like making sense of Afridi’s batting.
What not to do against Pakistan
Hit the ball in the air to anyone who isn’t Kamran Akmal.