Cricket Betting Tips and Match Prediction for APL 2018 Balkh Legends v Paktia Panthers

Mohammad Shahzad
Mohammad Shahzad
©REUTERS/Danish Siddiqui

Balkh Legends are the only team in the Afghanistan Premier League to have won both of their matches till now. Although Paktia Panthers lost their first encounter which was a high scoring one, they bounced back in their second match defeating Nangarhar Leopards.

Chris Gayle is expected to return to the Balkh Legends side. Gayle is just coming off a century for Jamaica in his last match of the list A Super50 Cup. However, his return will mark another headache for the legends. Their three overseas batsmen in Colin Munro, Ryan ten Doeschate and Ravi Bopara have done nothing wrong to be dropped.

While Munro can turn out to be one of the star batsmen of the team, Doeschate has scored a brilliant 78 not out from 46 balls. Ravi Bopara has also made two useful contributions and he can also come in handy with the ball.

The Legends might settle for replacing Ben Laughlin with local bowler Usman Ghani to solve this puzzle. Mohammad Nabi, Gulbadin Naib and Qais Ahmad are their chief bowlers.

For Paktia Panthers, Mohammad Shahzad has continued his breathtaking form after notching up a hundred against India in the Asia Cup. He has backed it up by successive half-centuries in the first two matches. His contribution would be crucial to the fate of Paktia Panthers.

Zimbabwe's Sikandar Raza will be another major player for the Panthers. Sri Lankan pacer Isuru Udana who picked up 2-28 against Nangarhar Leopards will be their main man with the ball.

Here are the playing XI for both teams.

Balkh Legends - Johnson Charles, Anton Devcich, Najeeb Tarakai, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Shafiqullah Shafiq, Ben Cutting, Mitchell McClenaghan, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Naveen-ul-Haq, Zahir Khan

Paktia Panthers - Mohammad Shahzad, Ihsanullah, Cameron Delport, Sikandar Raza, Shahid Afridi, Samiullah Shenwari, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Azmatullah Omarzai, Isuru Udana, Zia-ur-Rehman, Yousuf Zazai, Tahir Khail

Cricket Betting Tips and Match Prediction*

Who will win? Balkh Legends

Top Batsman (Runs Scored) - Hashmatullah Shahidi (Balkh Legends), Mohammad Shahzad (Paktia Panthers)

Top Bowler (Wickets taken) - Mujeeb Ur Rahman (Balkh Legends), Isuru Udana (Paktia Panthers)

Most Sixes - Johnson Charles (Balkh Legends), Mohammad Shahzad (Paktia Panthers)

Team Scores (Batting First) – Balkh Legends 170+, Paktia Panthers 150+

*NB these predictions may be changed nearer the start of the match once the final starting teams have been announced and we will be running ‘In–Play’ features soon, so stay tuned.

© Cricket World