The Islamabad United have had their travails in the ongoing edition of the PSL. Barring the eight-wicket victory over table-toppers Multan Sultans, the Shadab Khan-led unit has found it tough. Having played six matches, they are placed fifth in the table with five points. Their next match is against the Lahore Qalandars, who they beat previously by one wicket, at the Gaddafi Stadium.
The Qalandars, on the other hand, have had a start similar to the previous edition of the T20 tournament. Sohail Akhtar’s men missed out tantalisingly against the United. Then in their third game they couldn’t get over the line against Peshawar Zalmi despite a strong batting show. However, the 37-run victory against the Quetta Gladiators would give them a lot of confidence.
Pitch and Conditions
The pitch at the Gaddafi Stadium has turned out to be a belter thus far. Bowlers have found it tough with no room for error. It’s not expected to change much even on Wednesday’s match. The track has also favoured the team, batting second. There are chance of heavy rain at around 2 PM, but the percentage will come down during game time. The temperature will be around 18 degrees Celsius.
Fakhar Zaman and Chris Lynn have threatened in patches, but they haven’t gotten a massive score under their belt. Ben Dunk turned on the heat last time with a sparkling 93. Samit Patel is in good rhythm as well, scoring 115 with a top score of 71. Mohammad Hafeez has lost a bit of form though.
In the bowling department, Shaheen Shah Afridi has arguably been the standout performer. He has six wickets to his name at an economy rate below seven. Dilbar Hussain has six wickets as well. Patel’s confidence is also high after getting two wickets last time. Salman Irshad hasn’t done bad either.
Fakhar Zaman, Chris Lynn, Mohammad Hafeez, Ben Dunk (wk), Samit Patel, Sohail Akhtar (C), Seekkuge Prasanna, Salman Irshad, Muhammad Faizan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Dilbar Hussain
Dawid Malan didn’t play the previous game for some reason. If he returns then the United may bench Colin Munro, who only has 84 runs at an average of 16.80. Luke Ronchi hasn’t flattered to deceive at the top, having scored 194 runs in five matches at an average of 48.50, striking at 156.45.
Shadab Khan has 153 runs with a couple of fifties after promoting himself up the order. But with three wickets from five games, he is yet to show his class with the ball. Faheem Ashraf has seven scalps, but at an economy of 10.58. The onus will also be on the class and calibre of Dale Steyn.
Luke Ronchi (wk), Colin Munro, Rizwan Hussain, Colin Ingram, Shadab Khan (C), Asif Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Ahmed Safi Abdullah, Dale Steyn, Muhammad Musa, Rumman Raees
Probable Top Performers
Mohammad Hafeez– Lahore Qalandars | Dale Steyn– Islamabad United
TV: D Sport
Live Streaming – Cricket GateWay
Match Timings – 19:30 IST; 19:00 local; 14:00 GMT