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by Alastair Symondson & Cricket World Friday 21 February 2020
Defending Champions Quetta Gladiators got their Pakistan Super League 2020 campaign off to a winning start with a 3-wicket victory against Islamabad United in the opening fixture of the tournament.
Tearaway Mohammad Hasnain stood out for the Gladiators with the ball, picking up 4 wickets while conceding just 25 runs off his 4 overs. All-rounder Ben Cutting and Sohail Khan also shared 5 wickets between them.
The Gladiators did not get off to a great start with them tottering at 26/3 within the first five overs. It was the explosive half-century from Azam Khan which pushed them ahead of the required run rate. Breezy 20s from Mohammad Nawaz and Ben Cutting then took the team to a 3-wicket victory with 9 balls to spare.
Kamran Akmal was the top run-scorer for Peshawar Zalmi last year and the second highest overall with 357 runs from 13 innings at an average of 27.46 and a strike rate of 137.83. Imam-ul-Haq was just behind him with 341 runs including four half-centuries. The two will continue to have the onus of putting runs on the board.
Hasan Ali was the top wicket-taker for the team last year with 25 scalps and fitness permitting, he will pair with Wahab Riaz (17 wickets from 13 matches last season) to form a formidable pair.
All-rounder Kieron Pollard will be available from March 7. Tom Banton, Shoaib Malik, Liam Livingstone, Lewis Gregory and Carlos Brathwaite are their other players of repute.
Let's have a look at the squads of both teams:
Quetta Gladiators - Mohammad Nawaz, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shane Watson, Ahmed Shehzad, Anwar Ali, Mohammad Hasnain, Ahsan Ali, Naseem Shah, Jason Roy, Ben Cutting, Sohail Khan, Tymal Mills, Abdul Nasir, Arish Ali Khan, Azam Khan, Keemo Paul (from March 7), Khurram Manzoor, Zahid Mehmood (until March 7)
Peshawar Zalmi - Hasan Ali, Kieron Pollard (from March 7), Wahab Riaz, Kamran Akmal, Darren Sammy, Imam-ul-Haq, Umar Amin, Tom Banton, Shoaib Malik, Liam Dawson, Mohammad Mohsin, Rahat Ali, Adil Amin, Amir Khan, Aamir Ali, Liam Livingstone, Haider Ali Khan, Lewis Gregory, Carlos Brathwaite (until March 7)
Who will win the toss? - Peshawar Zalmi
Who will win? – Peshawar Zalmi
Top Batsman (Runs Scored) – Shane Watson (Quetta Gladiators), Tom Banton (Peshawar Zalmi)
Top Bowler (Wickets taken) – Mohammad Hasnain (Quetta Gladiators), Wahab Riaz (Peshawar Zalmi)
Most Sixes – Shane Watson (Quetta Gladiators), Tom Banton (Peshawar Zalmi)
Player of the Match – Tom Banton
Team Scores Batting first – Quetta Gladiators 160+, Peshawar Zalmi 175+
Match Handicap Peshawar ZalmiLive Cricket Streaming Pakistan Super League 2020 - bet365's live cricket streaming page which enables you to watch live cricket. (BeGambleAware 18+) Live Cricket Streaming from bet365 requires a funded account or for customers to have placed a bet in the last 24 hours. Geo-restrictions apply.*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, so stay tuned.
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