PSL 2021 Preview: Quetta Gladiators, Islamabad United hustle for revival

Somya Kapoor

Somya Kapoor

Author| Jun 10, 1:47 PM

Photo Credits: Twitter
Photo Credits: Twitter

Islamabad United had a disappointing start to the proceedings of PSL after the tournament resumed on Wednesday (June 9, 2021). The United side suffered a defeat at the hands of Lahore Qalandars and are now placed at number four spot with three wins and two losses in five matches. 

On the other hand, Quetta Gladiators will play their first match after the PSL resumption. The Gladiators didn’t have a great run during the first leg and are presently placed at the bottom of the table with only one win in their kitty from five matches. 

To add to Islamabad’s misery was Faheem Ashraf’s injury (split webbing) that he sustained on his left hand during the match against Qalandars and needed stitches. Faheem’s injury would mean that Islamabad United will have a forced change in this encounter against Gladiators. 

Having said that, this is just the beginning of the tournament and the Shadab Khan-led side has some time to get back on track with few prominent overseas and domestic players in the ranks. 

Gladiators will be missing the services of some big guns like Tom Banton, Dale Steyn, Anwar Ali, Chris Gayle and Ben Cutting but they have some new recruits which include the hard-hitting West Indies all-rounder Andre Russell. 

The oppositions are well aware of Russell’s calibre both with bat and ball and how he can take away the game single-handedly on his day. 

While Russell brings a lot of balance in the side both with bat and ball, presence of experienced batsmen like Faf du Plessis and former Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed can also bring some fruitful results for the team. 

Match Details

Date: June 11, 2021 (Friday)

Time: 8:00 PM LOCAL/ 9:30 PM IST

Venue: Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi

Weather Report

The temperature in Abu Dhabi in the initial phase of the game will be around 33 degree celsius and not much of a change is expected. 

Pitch Report

The track in Abu Dhabi was expected to produce some big scores but that didn’t really happen in the first match. 

However, the team chasing second did emerge victorious but had to fight really hard to get their way back in the match. It was certainly a nail-biting finish for the Qalandars against United, courtesy some aggressive stroke play from Rashid Khan. 

So, if you win the toss, elect to field first and try to restrict the opposition for a lesser total because chasing can become tricky if there are some early blows. 

Team News

Islamabad United: Islamabad United will be without the services of Faheem Ashraf who got injured in the first match against Lahore. 

"Faheem suffered a laceration to the base of the left thumb. Suturing was completed in the ER, he was given antibiotics and paracetamol and discharged into our care," United physio Jason Pilgrim said in a statement.

Islamabad would be seeking a replacement for him in the middle-order. Muhammad Musa or Akif Javed might be the option for Ashraf’s replacement. 

Quetta Gladiators: The Gladiators team might be missing some key players especially the T20 specialists but the addition of Russell brings a lot of stability and strength in the middle order. 

The presence of Faf du Plessis is also a boon for the side. He was in some terrific form in the now suspended IPL and would be looking to continue that in this clash. 

Predicted XIs

Islamabad United: Usman Khawaja, Colin Munro, Shadab Khan, Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed, Asif Ali, Akif Javed, Rohail Nazir, Hasan Ali, Fawad Ahmed, Mohammad Wasim Jr

Quetta Gladiators: Usman Khan, Faf du Plessis, Saim Ayub, Cameron Delport, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Azam Khan, Andre Russell, Jack Wildermuth, Mohammad Nawaz, Zahid Mahmood, Mohammad Hasnain

Fantasy XI

Usman Khawaja, Shadab Khan (VC), Sarfaraz Ahmed, Andre Russell (C), Faf du Plessis, Colin Munro, Hussain Talat, Asif Ali, Fawad Ahmed, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Nawaz

  • PSL 2021
  • Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi

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