The top position in the points table will be up for grabs when Lahore Qalandars and Islamabad United kick off the second leg of PSL 6. Both teams had a decent run in the first half and won three out of four games.
Lahore Qalandars boast of a very strong team. Fakhar Zaman and Mohammad Hafeez delivered staggering performances before the tournament was postponed and will once again hold the key with the willow. Zaman, especially, has been in stellar form of late and stroked a couple of centuries on the South Africa tour. Cullum Ferguson, Ben Dunk and James Faulkner provide a lot of depth to the team. The batting is backed by a lethal attack comprising Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf and Rashid Khan. Players like Mohammad Hafeez and Seekuge Prasanna can also cause a lot of trouble to the opposition.
The change in schedule of PSL has hurt Islamabad United as their main overseas players, Alex Hales and Phil Salt won’t be available for the UAE leg. However, the inclusion of Colin Munro and Usman Khawaja will bring some respite. The onus is going to shift to Faheem Ashraf and Shadab Khan to do the job, both with bat and ball. While the batting has some issues, the bowling is laced with some quality options. Hasan Ali is in the middle of a dream run while the likes of Fawad Ahmed, Mohammad Wasim, Muhammad Musa are match-winners on their day.
Overall, Lahore Qalandars is a better-balanced side and will go into the match as favourites but Islamabad United cannot be counted out as they have few very good players, capable of pulling off a victory on their own.
The surface should be flat and good for batting. It will be on the slower side and with large boundaries, spinners are going to play a big role.
Lahore Qalandars Team News
Lahore Qalandars have a good mix of youth and experience and quite a few of their players have decent performances under their belt coming into the tournament. They had a good start to the tournament and will be looking to continue their good run.
Fakhar Zaman was in chilling form in South Africa and scored a couple of hundreds, including a massive 193. Zaman will see PSL as an opportunity to make a cut into the Pakistan T20 World Cup squad and would be in no mood to let this opportunity go.
Predicted Playing 11
Fakhar Zaman, Sohail Akhtar (c) , Mohammad Hafeez, Callum Ferguson, Ben Dunk (wk), Tim David/James Faulkner, Zeeshan Ahraf, Ahmed Danyal, Rashid Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf
Islamabad United Team News
Islamabad United will miss the services of Paul Stirling and Alex Hales at the top but will be happy that they’ve got two equally dangerous players, Colin Munro and Usman Khawaja as replacements.
Hasan Ali is in middle of a dream run and accounted for 18 wickets across two Tests against Zimbabwe. While the format was completely different, it must have boosted Hasan Ali’s confidence who will be keen to carry on his good form in the PSL as well.
Predicted Playing 11
Usman Khawaja, Fawad Ahmed, Colin Munro, Rohail Nazir (wk), Shadab Khan (c), Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed, Faheem Ashraf, Mohammad Wasim, Hasan Ali, Musa Khan