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One thing that we really love about the Pakistan Super League is the pace of the tournament. PSL 2019 is already entering its final phase of league matches and teams are scrambling to make the PSL 2019 playoffs.
This match will see the top-2 teams of the tournament right now, the Quetta Gladiators take on Peshawar Zalmi. Both the sides have played seven matches and won five. They are only separated by net run-rate which puts Peshawar Zalmi on the top spot.
A win in this match will not only mean a clear lead for the winner but will also more or less secure a spot in the knockouts. PSL 2019 also offers an incentive for teams to finish in the top-2 so these teams have everything to fight for.
The Quetta Gladiators won their previous match with a lot of ease thanks to a stellar bowling performance. Sohail Tanvir and Dwayne Bravo took three wickets each while Mohammad Nawaz and Mohammad Hasnain chipped in as well.
The advantage of having three bowlers with extensive T20 experience is showing gives the Quetta Gladiators a big boost. Sohail Tanvir, Dwayne Bravo, and Fawad Ahmed have played around the world and bowled in almost every conceivable situation.
The captain does not need to do anything other than throwing one of the bowlers the ball.
The entire cricketing community has enthralled with the pace that Mohammad Hasnain is bowling at. He is very young and already has the maturity to meld pace with line. The ICC World Cup 2019 is very close and his performances are going to leave a mark. We won’t be surprised if Pakistan decides to blood him in the national team before the World Cup as well.
Quetta Gladiators were not chasing a very large total in the previous match but it would have pleased them to see most of their batsmen get starts. Shane Watson, Rilee Rossow, and Ahmad Shahzad all made good contributions towards the victory.
Having Shahzad bat in the top-3 is not something we like because his T20 performances are not very good. He tends to face a lot of deliveries and then gets out. Such things are not going to show up while chasing down a small total but could matter a lot against a strong batting opponent like Peshawar Zalmi.
Rilee Rossow or even Umar Akmal would be a much better choice for the number three position.
The Quetta Gladiators have got back to winning ways and we expect them to be at the top of their game against Peshawar Zalmi.
SR Watson, Ahsan Ali, Ahmed Shehzad, Rilee Rossouw, Umar Akmal, Dwayne Bravo, Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Hasnain, S Tanvir, Sarfraz Ahmed, Fawad Ahmed.
Last ball finishes have become quite common in PSL 2019 and Peshawar Zalmi too got into the act in their last match against Islamabad United. Peshawar Zalmi needed 177 runs to win and the equation came down to 4 runs needed off the last ball which Liam Dawson achieved with the minimum of fuss.
Peshawar Zalmi has impressed us with its cricket in PSL 219. They started off a bit shakily but have since built some very impressive momentum. They also seem to have a number of different players performing to win them matches.
Liam Dawson scored an unbeaten 50 in the previous match and there was a crucial 40 scored by Darren Sammy as well. In previous matches, Imam ul Haq has scored runs at the top and Kieron Pollard has been brilliant in the middle order.
In fact, it is the middle order comprising of three all-rounders that makes Peshawar Zalmi so dangerous. Liam Dawson, Kieron Pollard, and Darren Sammy are all-rounders although Sammy is playing primarily as a batsman in the side.
These three have shown an incredible ability to power sixes and ramp up the scoring rate as required. If they continue to remain in good form then Peshawar Zalmi is going to be a very difficult team to beat.
Now that they have added Andre Fletcher to the top-order alongside Kamran Akmal, the Peshawar Zalmi batting is looking stronger than Quetta Gladiators.
Hasan Ali has been leading the bowling for Peshawar Zalmi and is the highest wicket-taker in PSL 2019 right now. His ability to nail the Yorkers during the death overs is well documented but he has been picking up wickets with the new ball too this season.
Wahab Riaz, Umaid Asif, and Ibtisam Sheikh round out the bowling lineup.
The only thing lacking from this bowling lineup is wrist-spinner of repute. Peshawar Zalmi is in red-hot form and is going to be difficult to stop.
Kamran Akmal, ADS Fletcher , Imam-ul-Haq, Umar Amin, LA Dawson, Kieron Pollard, DJG Sammy, Wahab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Umaid Asif, Sameen Gul.
The side winning the toss is likely to want to bat first
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The PSL 2019 match between the Quetta Gladiators and Peshawar Zalmi is going to be played at Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi. This will be the first match of the Abu Dhabi leg and so we can expect the pitch to be at its best.
Abu Dhabi has usually been able to provide batting surfaces that are better than what we get in Dubai and so we should have some high-scoring games. There is still going to be some help for the spinners but a little more pace in the surface to help the batsmen play their shots.
The weather is not expected to be an issue on match day.
A top of the table clash always raises expectations especially in a league like the Pakistan Super League where the teams are very closely matched. Both sides have some in-form match winners and pretty well balanced. The Quetta Gladiators have the experience in their bowling while Peshawar Zalmi seems to have the stronger batting lineup.
We think Peshawar Zalmi’s batting is going to carry the day for its side.
Back Peshawar Zalmi to win.
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