APL 2018 Match 15, Nangarhar Leopards vs Paktia Panthers: Preview, Predicted XI and Match Prediction

Will Nangarhar Leopards get back to their winning ways?
Will Nangarhar Leopards get back to their winning ways?

Its all set for the weekend? So, it is a doubleheader Sunday today. Poised Nangarhar Leopards will be contesting the muddled Paktia Panthers for the second match of the doubleheader Sunday.

Nangrahar Leopards and Paktia Panthers will be coming against each other for the second time in the tournament. The last time they met, the latter won the encounter by 21 runs.

Thus, with evenly balanced teams on offer, the encounter is expected to be a close one.

APL 2018 - Nangarhar Leopards vs Paktia Panthers, Match 15 Details:

Match Date: 14 October 2018, Sunday

Match Time: 4:00 PM GMT, 9:30 PM IST, 8:00 PM LOCAL

Match Venue: Sharjah Cricket Association Stadium, Sharjah, UAE

Nangarhar Leopards

Nangarhar Leopards haven't been able to continue their excellent form which has cost them dear in the tournament. A comprehensive win against Kabul set the tone for Nangarhar Leopards. However, their yesterday's humiliating loss against Kandahar Knights have once again created a sense of doubt.

Nangarhar Leopards have some resolute names in their batting lineup. Despite that, they haven't been able to maintain a decent level of consistency in their batting. Leopards have witnessed two extremes in their batting form - the best and the worst. Thus, with the equals of Anton Devcich, Johnson Charles, and Hashmatullah Shahidi, Leopards will have to bring uniformity to their batting department.

Bowling hasn't been their forte. Barring two or three games, they have struggled considerably with the ball. Leopards depend heavily on Mujeeb, Cutting, and Naveen-ul-Haq for the job with the ball. However, last night they bowled brilliantly with everyone contributing.

But they missed the trick at the business end of the innings where they were expected to wrap up the opposition quite early after having restricted them to 75/8 at the end of 15 overs. Nonetheless, they failed to contain Knights as they managed to score 137/8 in their quota of 20 overs.

Thus, Nangarhar Leopards will look to instil a sense of consistency in their batting as well as bowling in today's game against Paktia.

Probable Playing XI for Nangarhar Leopards: Anton Devcich, Johnson Charles, Rahmat Shah, Hashmatullah Shahidi, Shafiqullah Shafiq (WK), Imran Janat, Nathon Rimmington, Ben Cutting (C), Naveen-ul-Haq, Mujeeb Ur Rahman, and Zahir Khan.

Paktia Panthers

Meanwhile, Paktia Panthers have had a decent run at the tournament under the captaincy of Mohammad Shahzad. At one point in time, Panthers were the table toppers. However, a loss against Balkh in the previous game has brought them to the third spot.

Paktia Panthers have had an immaculate batting lineup which includes the likes of Mohammad Shahzad, Cameron Delport, and Raza. However, Panthers had to face a grave batting collapse in the previous match where they locked horns with Balkh. Else, they possess a decent blend of national and overseas batsmen.

On the other hand, their bowling has been good as well. Excluding one or two wayward performances, their bowlers have performed exceedingly well in this league.

Thus, after having lost their previous encounter very poorly, Panthers will look to reroute their form while eyeing a top spot in the points table.

Probable Playing XI for Paktia Panthers: Mohammad Shahzad (C), Rahmanullah Gurbaz, Cameron Delport, Sharafuddin Ashraf, Sikandar Raza, Mohammad Sardar, Shahid Afridi, Samiullah Shenwari, Isuru Udana, Yamin Ahmadzai, and Azmatullah Omarzai.

Match Prediction

With big names in their unit, Nangarhar Leopards are expected to have upper hand in the game against Paktia Panthers.

Scenario 1: Nangarhar Leopards batting first

Predicted Score: 170-175

Scenario 2: Paktia Panthers batting first

Predicted Score: 165-175

Final Prediction: Nangarhar Leopards strengthen their hold in the points table.

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Edited by Sripad