About the Match
An absolutely brilliant performance by the Khulna Titans has propelled them to the top of the table with six wins from nine matches. They now face up against a potential title contender in the Comilla Victorians who have five wins from just seven matches. Comilla, though, lost its last game and will want to ensure they don’t lose another one and let go of all the momentum they have built up.
The Khulna Titans scored a brilliant 213 from their 20 overs and the best part of that effort was the fact that their local players did the bulk of the scoring. Nazmul Shanto shrugged off his run of bad form and scored 49 from 31 deliveries, Atif Hossain remained not out on 54 from 38 deliveries and the pair hit seven sixes between them as well.
The finishing boost was provided Nicolas Pooran and Craig Braithwaite, both of who took a potentially good score and turned it into an absolute gigantic one.
Good form is running through the batting order right now and with Rille Rossow also in the lineup, it seems like more of these big totals are going to come the Khulna Titans way.
Defending a huge total may seem easy but the Khulna Titans bowlers did a remarkable job on an absolutely flat batting pitch. Abu Jayed and Shaiful Islam continued the theme of the local players performing well for the Titans while Kyle Abbott, Joffra Archer, and Craig Brathwaite showcased their talent as well.
Excellent team selection and the fact that they can rely on their local players to contribute meaningfully in both aspects of the game has made the Khulna Titans a force to be reckoned with in this tournament.
They are also hitting their best form at just the right time.
A loss in the last game against the much lesser fancied Rajshahi Kings could be regarded as a bit of stumble for the Comilla Victorians. They have been having an absolutely brilliant tournament but the other teams are nipping at their heels and so they cannot afford to let up at all.
The addition of Hasan Ali, and Shoaib Malik to their team has made even more dangerous than they already were. Hasan Ali is in the middle of a dream run in the shorter formats and is regarded as one of the best T20 bowlers in the world while Shoaib Malik has proven himself in countless T20 tournaments as well.
With Fakhar Zaman at the top of the batting order, this side has a decidedly Pakistani flavor to it.
A look at the Comilla Victorians lineup shows the power they posse. Tamim Iqbal, Fakhar Zaman, and an in-form Imrul Kayes at the top of the order followed by Shoaib Malik and Jos Buttler in the middle.
Alok Kapali and Mohammad Saifuddin can also swing the bat effectively but the Victorians will hope it does not quite come down to that.
That strong batting lineup is backed by a bowling lineup comprising of Rashid Khan, Hasan Ali, Mehedi Hasan, and the local fast bowlers. The only area of concern may be that the remaining eight overs to be bowled among Al-Amin Hossain, Mohammad Saifuddin, and Shoaib Malik can be targeted by the opposition.
All things considered, the Comilla Victorians are one of the strongest sides this tournament and deserve their position near the top of the table.
Pitch and Conditions
Chittagong has been very lucky with the weather so far and the current forecast suggests that we can expect more of the good weather to continue. Equally importantly, the venue has also provided some of the best batting surfaces of the tournament and has led to some high scoring games. That trend should also continue especially with some of the best batting talent on display in this match.
A score of 180 may be considered par.
The two teams have won one match each from the last two times they have faced up against each other. Both of them were close matches that could have gone either way. We believe that the same is going to be the case this time around. A close match that the Khulna Titans may just be able to edge out.
Back the Khulna Titans to win