About the Match
Karachi Kings had a dismal show last season but they will try to start afresh with a better performance in all departments of the game, when they take on Zalmi in the 3rd Match of the PSL 2017 at Dubai on 10th February. Peshawar Zalmi suffered a setback in the second qualifier last year against Islamabad after a successful league, and they will be wary of their opponents with better preparedness this time. It needs to be seen which team can overcome the challenges on the field and come out with flying colours on Friday
Kumar Sangakkara will try to lead the side from the front and his tremendous experience and fine skills as a batsman could help the team put up a better performance this season after a poor show last year. He has a strong batting line-up that consists of players like Shoaib Malik, Ravi Bopara who continues to enthral the fans with his all-rounder capabilities, all-rounder Keiron Pollard and giants like Chris Gayle and Mahela Jayawardene, who can demolish the opposition bowlers.
Bowlers Mohammad Amir, Rahat Ali and Sohail Khan can provide quick breakthroughs with their fast-bowling skills while spinners like Imad Wasim and Shoaib Malik could try to outwit the Zalmi batsmen here. Ryan McLaren, Ravi Bopara and Pollard add variety to the attack and can be useful in breaking partnerships.
Sangakkara and Jayawardene share a special understanding and could prove to be a formidable force to reckon with when it comes to setting up huge totals; along with other senior players, the Kings can pack a punch against any bowling attack.
Zalmi has Darren Sammy taking the leadership role yet again and he has quite an armoury with bat and ball to achieve the desired goals here. Tillakaratne Dilshan, Marlon Samuels, Mohammad Hafeez, Shakib Al Hasan, Shahid Afridi and Tamim Iqbal are strong pillars of the team, who can cause havoc on the Kings whether batting first or chasing a target. Afridi and Hasan are strong finishers while Samules, Dilshan and Iqbal can join hands to build a solid foundation.
England T20 captain Eoin Morgan adds depth to the middle-order while others like Sohaib Maqsood, all-rounder Samit Patel, Haris Sohail, Andre Fletcher, Kamran Akmal and Iftikhar Ahmed can help keep the scoreboard ticking. The batting line-up is deep and could prove to be a tough but to crack here.
Fast-bowlers Imran Khan, Junaid Khan and Wahab Riaz could try to demolish the opposition right from the start while speedsters like Hasan Ali and Chris Jordan add depth to the attack. Spinners include Mohammad Asghar, Afridi and Sohail and they can bring their clever variations to the mix. Overall, they had a good season last year and will be eager to start the campaign on a winning note.
The Kings have a star-studded batting contingent that could blast away sixes and fours with ease to make life difficult for Zalmi bowlers; however, the latter too has the required firepower to give a solid answer if required. It could be a contest between the hard-hitters from Kings and the ruthless pace attack of Zalmi leading to a true livewire till the end; but we feel that Karachi Kings with their experienced stalwarts are better placed to win this game.