Facing the ignominy of an early exit, former champions Quetta Gladiators face last season's runners-up Lahore Qalandars in a crucial Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2021 match tonight in Abu Dhabi, UAE. (More Cricket News)
As things stand now, the Sarfaraz Ahmed-led Gladiators are at the bottom of the table with just two points from their solitary win, against Multan Sultans in March before the interruption due to COVID-19. In the Abu Dhabi leg, they have played only two matches and lost both heavily -- by 10 wickets against Islamabad United and by 61 runs against Peshawar Zalmi.
Besides, they also lost their star players Andre Russell and Faf du Plessis due to injuries, both concussed. The West Indies all-rounder was hit by a bouncer during the United match, while the former South Africa captain was involved in a nasty collision during the Zalmi clash. So, not everything is right for one of the most consistent sides in the league's history.
In contrast, Sohail Akhtar's Qalandars are fighting for the top spot and a win tonight with, and with a better run rate, can dislodge in-form United. After losing the title clash last year to Karachi Kings, Qalandars playing possibly their best cricket. Yes, they lost to United in the top-of-the-table clash on Sunday, but will start the fixture against the Gladiators as obvious favourites. They won the reverse fixture in Karachi by nine wickets, and have won two of three matches in Abu Dhabi.
Head-to-head: Qalandars enjoy a slight advantage, winning six as against Gladiators' five in their 11 meetings so far. In fact, Qalandars have dominated this particular fixture since 2019, winning four times in five.
Match and telecast details
Match: 23rd match of Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2021 between Quetta Gladiators and Lahore Qalandars
Date: June 15 (Tuesday), 2021
Time: 6:30 PM IST/ 5:00 PM local
Venue: Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi, UAE
TV Channels: Sony Pictures Network
Live Streaming: SonyLIV
Playing XIs in the previous match
Quetta Gladiators (vs Peshawar Zalmi): Faf du Plessis, Usman Khan, Jake Weatherald, Sarfaraz Ahmed( c & wk), Azam Khan, Cameron Delport, Mohammad Nawaz, Zahir Khan, Mohammad Hasnain, Khurram Shahzad, Zahid Mahmood.
Lahore Qalandars (vs Islamabad United): Fakhar Zaman, Sohail Akhtar (c), Zeeshan Ashraf, Mohammad Hafeez, Ben Dunk (wk), Tim David, James Faulkner, Rashid Khan, Ahmed Daniyal, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf.
Quetta Gladiators: Sarfaraz Ahmed (c), Abdul Nasir, Andre Russell (partially available), Arish Ali Khan, Azam Khan, Cameron Delport, Faf du Plessis, Hassan Khan, Jack Wildermuth, Jake Weatherald, Khurram Shehzad, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Nawaz, Naseem Shah, Saim Ayub, Usman Khan, Usman Shinwari, Zahid Mahmood and Zahir Khan.
Lahore Qalandars: Sohail Akhtar (c), Ahmed Danyal, Ben Dunk, Callum Ferguson, Dilbar Hussain, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, James Faulkner, Maaz Khan, Mohammad Faizan, Mohammad Hafeez, Rashid Khan, Salman Ali Agha, Seekuge Prasana, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Sultan Ahmed, Tim David, Zaid Alam and Zeeshan Ashraf.