Lahore and Islamabad will resume Pak T20 League 2021 when they face each other in Abu Dhabi. Both teams have lost just one game from their first four and take 3rd and 4th position in the points table.
Match Timings: June 09, 9:30 PM IST
Pak T20 League 2021 is going to resume in Abu Dhabi. Last season’s beaten finalists and the two-times winner Islamabad will play in the first game of the resumption. Both sides had a great start to season 2021 with losing just one game out of four. They have played one game less than the top-two sides so eventually, they can eye the top spot after this game.
Lahore is optimistic about this season as they have a pool of quality players and Rashid Khan is also back in action who was unavailable after a couple of games in the first half. In the previous game, Lahore won by 6 wickets and chased down 187 against defending champions. Fakhar Zaman scored 83 off 54 balls and led the chase when Lahore lost two wickets without scoring a run. Even Hafeez also got out in powerplay to leave Lahore struggling at 33/3. Ben Dunk also scored a half-century, followed by a 9-ball 31 from David Weise which sealed the game for Lahore.
Lahore has a solid middle-order and top-order is also decent. Their bowling unit is also impactful with Shaheen and Rauf. After Rashid, they got the best spin option. Abu Dhabi’s surface will be useful for the spin. Rashid picked 20 wickets with an economy of less than 7 when he played Indian T20 League 2020 here.
Meanwhile, Islamabad is also in good form but their momentum might be breaking this time. They also have a strong side and look to repeat their 2016 and 2018’s title glory. Islamabad are also coming off a 6-wicket win over Quetta, courtesy of Paul Stirling’s half-century. Stirling will be unavailable for them and Colin Munro can find his name in playing XI. They have a quality Pakistani lineup with Shadab Khan, Faheem Ashraf, Asif Ali, Musa Khan, and Hassan Ali.
Alex Hales’ form would be important for Islamabad. He was the top scorer for his Australia T20 League franchise and has scored 139 runs in season 2021 so far at an SR of 171.60. Middle-order is the part that should be changed and Munro might be the best player to try there. Faheem Ashraf and Hasan Ali’s bowling will be key for them. The spin factor will be important in Abu Dhabi. Shadab and Faheem both are quality spinners so they can control the game in middle-overs. Hasan Ali will lead the pace-attack who has 6 scalps so far in 2021 at an economy of less than 6.
Islamabad had an advantage over Lahore in past years and they have emerged victorious eight times out of 10 matches. Lahore even failed to beat Islamabad in the last five encounters. They had a glorious season in 2020 but didn’t find a win against Shadab Khan’s side. The losing streak can end in Abu Dhabi because Lahore look solid team on paper and they are favourites to win this game.
Abu Dhabi’s surface would be a better pitch in night games and it would be a late-night game. Spin might take control of the game if dew doesn’t take part. Temperature is high in Abu Dhabi and we can expect a score between 150-160. The batting first side will have a slight advantage due to the spin factor.
Rohail Nazir (wk), Alex Hales, Colin Munro, Shadab Khan (c), Iftikhar Ahmed, Asif Ali, Hussain Talat, Faheem Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Chris Jordan
Fakhar Zaman, Zeeshan Ashraf, Mohammad Hafeez, Sohail Akhtar (c), Ben Dunk (wk), Samit Patel, David Wiese, Shaheen Afridi, Rashid Khan, Dilbar Hussain, Haris Rauf
Top-scorer for his team in Australia T20 League, 139 runs so far in season 2021
Going through a top form, handy with spin
189 runs so far in Pak T20 League 2021, coming off a brilliant SA tour
20 wickets in last Indian T20 League 2020 which was played here & going through a top-form in 2021