The finalists of the previous season, Islamabad United and Peshawar Zalmi will face each other for the first time in the ongoing edition of Pakistan Super League on Friday at Sharjah International Stadium.
The reigning champions, Islamabad United have looked a bit off colour so far, winning just one game out of three they have played this season. United have not been able to get the ideal team combination so far and have been trying different playing XIs.
Moreover, they have been hurt by the lack of form of their leg-spin sensation, Shadab Khan, who has failed to create much of an impact with his bowling. Furthermore, Rumman Raees, who has been an integral part of Islamabad United but was unfortunately out for a year due to a knee injury, has just featured one game against Quetta Gladiators.
Gladiators ran riot against Islamabad United bowlers as Shane Watson and Umar Akmal scored 81 and 44 runs respectively, which led them to a seven-wicket win while chasing 158 runs.
On the other hand, Peshawar Zalmi have been in red hot form, especially their bowling line, who restricted Lahore Qalandars and Karachi Kings to 78 and 109 runs respectively. Hasan Ali has taken 8 wickets in two matches, giving away just 30 runs. Moreover, Umaid Asif, Wahab Riaz, Liam Dawson and Ibtisam Sheikh, all have been performing well.
Zalmi also have solid batting line, led by Kamran Akmal right at the top, then they have handy batsmen like Umar Amin, Liam Dawson, Kieron Pollard and to finish the inning, the dasher Darren Sammy.
Both the sides, Peshawar Zalmi and Islamabad United are well-equipped to give fans an entertaining contest.