Last edition’s runner-ups Lahore get their Pakistan T20 League campaign underway when they face Peshawar in the double-header clash on Sunday.
Match Timings: Feb 21, 2:30 PM IST
Lahore and Peshawar face each other in the Sunday-afternoon clash of the Pakistan T20 League. Lahore made into the finals of the season 2020 but lost to Karachi. They defeated Peshawar and Multan in eliminator games to crack the final. Lahore finished third in the points table with five wins and five losses. Sohail Akhtar will lead the side one more time. They have also made changes to the squad after the draft. They got the world’s best spinner Rashid Khan in the platinum category. Samit Patel had a good run in 2020, and he will also be available for Lahore this season. English player Joe Denly has been picked under the supplementary category. The bowling unit is a big strength of Lahore, with the players like Shaheen Shah, Haris Rauf, and Rashid Khan. Mohammed Hafeez and Fakhar Zaman are the pillars of the batting unit. Hafeez was in fine touch last season with scoring 312 runs at an average of 39. Ben Dunk and Fakhar both scored 300 plus runs last season. Lahore’s three batsmen were in the list of the top four leading run-scorers of 2020. They retained its core batting unit for this season.
Meanwhile, Peshawar qualified for the playoffs the last edition but failed to edge past Lahore in the eliminator. They won just four matches out of ten in the league-stage. Peshawar would look for a better start, and they will face Lahore one more time. Peshawar was sharp to pick players from the draft, and they have formed a compact side this time. They retained Haider Ali, Kamran Akmal, Liam Livingstone, Shoaib Malik, and Wahab Riaz for season 2021. Mujeeb Ur Rahman will now play for Peshawar, and Liam Livingston has also been picked under the gold category. Livingstone was in fine form as an opener in Australia T20 League 2020-21. Ravi Bopara and Sherfane Rutherford are also the best picks from the draft. David Miller, who recently smashed 85 against Pakistan, will play for Peshawar.
The young Haider Ali might open with Liam Livingstone. They also have an option with Imam there. Kamran Akmal and Shoaib Malik will play the sheet-anchor. The bowling unit will rely on experience pace duo Wahab Riaz and Mohammad Irfan. Peshawar is the balanced unit, but they have loopholes in its batting. Lahore has the upper hand on Sunday’s game.
Karachi’s surface is pretty decent for the T20 format. The track is good for batting, and spinners can take advantage later the match progress. It’s an afternoon clash, so batting first would be a good idea.
Fakhar Zaman, Sohail Akhtar, Zaid Alam, Mohammad Hafeez, Ben Dunk, Samit Patel, David Wiese, Rashid Khan, Haris Rauf, Shaheen Afridi, Dilbar Hussain
Haider Ali, Liam Livingstone, Kamran Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Ravi Bopara, Amad Butt, Wahab Riaz, Umaid Asif, Mohammad Irfan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Mohammad Imran
Last season – M: 13, Runs: 312, Avg: 39
Last season – M: 13, Wickets: 17, Avg: 19.53
Australia T20 League 2020-21- M: 14, Runs: 426, Avg: 30.42
Last season – M: 9, Runs: 278, Avg: 34.75