Islamabad United vs Peshawar Zalmi: Preview and Prediction
Islamabad United will be up against Peshawar Zalmi in the 29th match of the 2023 Pakistan Super League season. The match will take place in Rawalpindi’s Pindi Club Ground on Sunday.
For Islamabad United, this match will be all about maintaining their place in the top two as they have already qualified for the next round. The two-time champions have won six of their nine matches, and with 12 points, they are placed second in the standings.
On the other hand, Peshawar Zalmi is still fighting for a place in the playoffs. At the time of writing, they had won four of their first eight matches. With 8 points to their name, Peshawar is placed fourth in the points table.
What Have They Done So Far?
Islamabad United started their journey with a win over Karachi Kings. While Multan Sultans defeated them in the second game, Shadab Khan’s team made a stunning comeback with the help of back-to-back wins against Peshawar Zalmi and Quetta Gladiators.
Lahore Qalandars did manage to end their winning run, but Islamabad then won three matches on the trot against Karachi Kings, Quetta Gladiators, and Multan Sultans. That being said, the men in red suffered a defeat against Lahore Qalandars in their last match.
Peshawar Zalmi has been on a pretty rocky ride in this competition. They defeated Karachi Kings in their first match, but then lost their second match against Multan Sultans. After beating Quetta Gladiators in their third match, the 2017 champions lost consecutive matches against Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars.
Babar Azam’s team made a comeback with back-to-back wins against Karachi Kings and Lahore Qalandars, which gave them a golden chance of securing their place in the next round. But in their last match, Peshawar was handed a defeat by Quetta Gladiators.
Head to Head Record
The head-to-head records between these two teams are neck-and-neck, with Islamabad United having a slight advantage. The two-time champions have beaten Peshawar Zalmi ten times, while the 2017 winners have emerged victorious on 9 occasions.
The last meeting saw Islamabad United winning the match by 6 wickets. A Hasan Ali three-wicket haul helped United restrict Zalmi to a score of 156 runs, before a Rahmanullah Gurbaz half-century helped them chase the total in 14.5 overs.
Azam Khan (Islamabad United): Batting has not always been up to the mark of Islamabad United, but in Azam Khan, they have a powerhouse trump card. The batter is currently his team’s highest run-scorer with 280 runs in 9 matches at an average of 46.66.
Azam’s best performance came in the match against Quetta Gladiators, where he missed a century by just three runs. Besides that, he also scored a superb 72 not out in the match against Karachi Kings.
Babar Azam (Peshawar Zalmi): A lot has been said about his strike rate, but skipper Babar Azam has undoubtedly been the best batter from Peshawar Zalmi. With 379 runs at an average of 50+, he is presently leading the run-scorers’ list for his team.
Babar has scored one century in this tournament, which came very recently in the match against Quetta Gladiators. Besides that, he has also scored three half-centuries against Karachi Kings, Islamabad United, and Lahore Qalandars.
Predicted Playing XIs
Islamabad United: Saim Ayub, Babar Azam ©, Rovman Powell, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Mohammad Haris (wk), Haseebullah Khan, Usman Qadir, Wahab Riaz, Azmatullah Omarzai, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, Arshad Iqbal.
Peshawar Zalmi: Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Alex Hales, Colin Munro, Shadab Khan ©, Azam Khan (wk), Asif Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Mubasir Khan, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Hasan Ali, Fazalhaq Farooqi.
Islamabad United holds the upper hand on head-to-head records, while they also have been the better team this season. Hence, we have predicted Shadab’s team to bag all two points from this game.