Pakistan Super League 2021 Match 15
Lahore Qalandars vs Islamabad United – June 9th
THE FRESH START:
The Lahore Qalandars was the side to defeat in the first half of the PSL with three victories in four matches. Riding on the adventures of Shaheen Afridi and Fakhar Zaman, the Qalandars were well on course for a top-four conclusion.
Although the postponement of the PSL could disrupt their momentum, the Qalandars can now avail the facilities of Rashid Khan for the complete tournament. With Callum Ferguson and James Faulkner adding some much-required experience, the Qalandars are well-prepared to take on the test.
Possible playing XI: Sohail Akthar (c), Fakhar Zaman, Tim David, Zeeshan Ashraf/Ben Dunk, James Faulkner/Dilbar Hussain, Rashid Khan, Haris Rauf, Mohammad Hafeez, Callum Ferguson, Shaheen Afridi and Ahmed Daniyal.
Their challengers, Islamabad United, were also remarkable in their first phase of the PSL. Like Lahore, Islamabad also secured three of their first four matches, with Hasan Ali restoring his best form for his new side. With Colin Munro and Usman Khawaja taking up overseas places for the second phase, Islamabad United will appear to revive their PSL 2021 campaign with a victory.
Possible playing XI: Colin Munro, Faheem Ashraf, Shadab Khan (c), Iftikhar Ahmed, Asif Ali, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Wasim, Usman Khawaja, Rohail Nazir, Ali Khan and Fawad Ahmed.
The venue, Pitch Report, and Toss Prediction:
The wicket at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium is a modest one to bat on with plenty help on offer for the speedsters. Although the new-ball strike bowlers will look to exploit the conditions, the ball should slide nicely on to the bat.
There isn’t much spin and turn available off the wicket, with the batters expected to target the smaller sides of the ground. With dew playing an element, both sides will look to chase upon securing the toss. 175-185 should be a fantastic total at the venue, with the wicket expected to get better under the lights.
Although both sides look well-complemented on paper, Islamabad might just hold the benefit, owing to their exceptional balance and squad penetration. However, we should be in for an exciting start to the second leg of the PSL, with both sides looking to get a head start in the battle for a top-two finish.
Lahore Qalandars begins this match as the favourites with the odds of 1.76, while Islamabad United are very close at 2.00. The Lahore Qalandars has a distinct advantage going into this game. Their two best batters are in good form and they have bolstered the batting with some clever acquisitions as well.