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In the first match of the doubleheader Sunday in the Pak T20 League 2021, last season’s runners-up Lahore Qalandars are up against Peshawar Zalmi at the National Stadium in Karachi on Sunday afternoon. 

Lahore Qalandars enjoyed their best campaign last year as they made it to the knockout round for the first time, but ended up losing to Karachi Kings in the final. They will look to start this season with a victory to their name.

M Hafeez, F Zaman, B Dunk, J Denly, and D Wiese are some of the big names on the team, who are expected to aid skipper S Akhter in the batting department. S Afridi and H Rauf are expected to partner with the new ball. The addition of star leg-spinner R Khan will give the team more confidence to challenge for the title.

Peshawar Zalmi had their worst finish in last year’s season as they came 4th in the points table and lost to Lahore Qalandars in the first Eliminator. They will hope to perform better this time around.

The team struggled last year because of the unavailability of good home players and the poor form of their overseas players. With a whole new batch of overseas players like M Ur Rahman, S Rutherford, R Bopara, T Kohler-Cadmore, and D Miller, the Zalmi will be hoping for a much better campaign this time. 

The Qalandars seem stronger than they were last year and will be looking to start the season on a winning note against the Zalmi, who are looking weak on paper. Nonetheless, it will be an entertaining clash at Karachi to start the doubleheader Sunday.

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Match Details

  • Match: Lahore Qalandars vs. Peshawar Zalmi, Match 2
  • Venue: National Stadium, Karachi
  • Date & Time: Feb. 21, 2021, at 2.30 PM IST

Probable Playing XI

Lahore Qalandars

F Zaman, S Akhtar (C), Z Alam, M Hafeez, B Dunk (WK), S Patel, D Wiese, R Khan, H Rauf, S Afridi, D Hussain

Peshawar Zalmi

H Ali, K Akmal (WK), S Malik, R Bopara, A Butt, D Miller, W Riaz (C), U Asif, M Irfan, M Ur Rahman, M Imran

Pitch & Weather Report

The weather is expected to be bright and sunny in Karachi during the match. The temperature will be around 33 degrees during the game.

The pitch at the National Stadium is a good bowling wicket, with true bounce and pace on offer. Fast bowlers should get some early movement with the new ball. Spinners will come into play as the match progresses. The average score in the last five T20 games played here has been 155 runs.

The chasing team has won 4 of the last 5 T20 games played here. Expect the captain winning the toss to opt to bowl first. A score of around 170 runs should be a competitive one here.

Key Players

  • M Hafeez had an excellent time in the T20 format during the last season, in both domestic and international matches. He was the third-highest run scorer last season, with 312 runs at an average of 39. Expect him to start the new season with a bang.
  • D Wiese was brilliant with both bat and ball for the Qalandars last season. He took 12 wickets and scored 131 runs in 11 matches. He was also instrumental in the play-offs, taking 5 wickets and scoring 78 runs in 3 matches. 
  • R Khan is a magician with the ball and his exploits in T20 cricket need no introduction. He was brilliant in the recently-concluded Aus T20 League, taking 16 wickets in 10 matches. He will be looking to continue the same form in this tournament.
  • H Ali had a disappointing T20I series against South Africa, having scored just 46 runs in 3 matches at an average of 15.33. Nevertheless, he is a clean hitter of the white ball at the top of the order and can score runs at a good rate.
  • D Miller was at his absolute best in the last T20I match against Pakistan. He almost single-handedly tried to rescue the South African innings with his quick-fire 85 runs off 45 balls. He will take confidence from that knock and look forward to putting up a similar performance in this match. 
  • W Riaz has lost his spot in the national team due to poor performances in the recent matches. He had a good last season, taking 11 wickets in 10 matches, and will look to make a comeback with a strong performance this year.

Howzat Dream Team

  • Wicketkeepers: B Dunk, K Akmal
  • Batsmen: H Ali, D Miller, S Akhtar
  • All-rounders: M Hafeez, D Wiese
  • Bowlers: R Khan, S Afridi, M Ur Rehman, W Riaz
  • Captain: D Wiese/R Khan
  • Vice Captain: D Miller/K Akmal

NOTE: The Howzat dream team above is just a suggestion. You can select your own fantasy 11, and play fantasy cricket matches. Also, don’t forget to make any necessary changes to your team once the actual playing 11 is announced by each team (30 minutes before the start of the match) as some players you have selected might not be part of the team suggested.

Get fantasy cricket tips on your favorite fantasy sports app and select your own team, Howzat!

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