Fans of Pakistan cricket can watch their national team live online as the Pakistan side returns to action for the first time since August 1, when they face Zimbabwe Sunday in the first match of a short tour of the African nation that will feature a pair of T20 matches followed by three one-day international matches.
The eight-day tour wraps up on October 5, and was agreed upon as a way for Pakistan to return the favor when Zimbabwe visited Pakistan for a five-match series in May, becoming the first major international side since 2009 to play cricket inside Pakistan borders.
But while the Pakistan tour has political and historical implications, the first two matches — both in the T20 format — provide each side with a crucial tune-up leading into the World T20 Cup next year. The sixth edition of the World Cup for the high-powered, short format of cricket takes place in India, and feature 16 teams battling from March 11 to April 4.
To find out how to watch the first Zimbabwe vs. Pakistan T20 match of the Pakistan tour live online, see the streaming information at the bottom of this article. The action gets underway at 1 p.m. local time Sunday, September 27, at Harare Sports Club in the Zimbabwe capital city of Harare.
For viewers in Pakistan that's 4:30 p.m. In the United States, first ball is set to be bowled at 7 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time, 4 a.m. Pacific.
Pakistan and Zimbabwe have faced each other in 80 matches all-time in all formats but only seven times in the souped-up T20 format — and Pakistan has won all seven of those contests.
But though Zimbabwe was shut out in two T20 matches and two ODIs, with one ODI called off due to rain back in May, the African side comes into this Pakistan series on their own home turf with renewed confidence after taking morale-boosting victories against India and New Zealand earlier this year.
Zimbabwe topped India in the second of their two T20 matches at the same Harare Sports Club back on July 19. And on August 2, Zimbabwe — again playing at home — scored a seven win in an ODI match against this year's World Cup runner-up New Zealand.
But Zimbabwe will have their hands full against the Pakistan fast-bowling attack, which features the return of World Cup star Wahab Riaz, who has been sidelined since June with a thumb injury suffered in Pakistan's series against Sri Lanka in June, as well as Sohail Tanvir and seven-footer Mohammed Irfan.
India-based website CricHD will stream the Third ODI at this link, but fans who choose that option will have to put up with numerous advertisements that often cause slowdowns when viewing online. The best way to watch the final Zimbabwe vs. Pakistan cricket match live online in the United States is through Willow TV, which is available via this YouTube link with a monthly subscription fee, as well as on Willow TV's own site, accessible by clicking here.
But there are legal ways to watch Willow TV for free. Certain promotional offers make it possible to watch the all-cricket network, including the Zimbabwe vs. Pakistan ODI series, for a limited period of time, such as the offer at this link — or try the one-month free trial of Sling TV's International Sports Package, which includes Willow. Information on that deal can be found at this link.
Viewers with access to Pakistan internet sites can watch the match line online via Geo Super TV by clicking here.
[Images: Willow TV Screen Capture, Chris Hyde/Getty Images]