Yousuf boosts Lahore ahead of crunch clash
Match factsNov 7, 2008
Start time 7.30pm (1400 GMT)
The Big PictureInstead of Hyderabad, the ICL teams will now return to Ahmedabad - which will host the best-of-three finals. The last leg begins with a meeting between the two overseas teams. Dhaka Warriors are buoyant after shrugging off a slow start to the tournament with three consecutive wins against Mumbai Champs, Chandigarh Lions and Ahmedabad Rockets. Two points in their final game of the league phase will assure them a spot in the last four.
Lahore Badshahs have been erratic through the tournament, with three wins and three losses. Though there is an extra game in hand, they would not want to leave matters till the end, especially with their final game against table-toppers Chennai Superstars. Mohammad Yousuf's entry will be a boost in their push to secure a semi-final spot.
Where they rankDhaka, currently fourth with eight points, would look to rise further up with maximum points from this game. A win would seal a semis spot, but a loss would just make it a little nervy. Lahore if they win, will be level on points with Dhaka and with another game against already-qualified Chennai to follow, would fancy their chances to go ahead, on points, and not leave it down to net run-rate. Lahore, in sixth position with six points, will have it all to do and wins in their two remaining games are a must if they are to keep afloat in the tournament.
Form guide (last five matches, most recent first)Dhaka: WWWLW
- Lahore's Imran Nazir holds the record for the maximum number of sixes in an innings - nine against Mumbai.
- Alok Kapali, has not only registered the first hundred in ICL history, against Hyderabad, but also holds the record for the most number of sixes (17) in the tournament.
- Khalid Mahmoood, Lahore's wicketkeeper, shares the top spot with Bengal's Deep Dasgupta and Delhi's Paul Nixon for the most number of dismissals. His eight dismissals include six catches and two stumpings.
Players to watchWhile Alok Kapali has been hogging the limelight for Dhaka, Nazimuddin has quietly picked up two Man-of-the-Match awards. His 29-ball 54 against Delhi and 48 off the same number of balls against Ahmedabad bears witness the annihilation he is capable of at the top of the innings.
Lahore's leading run-scorer Imran Nazir has been a revelation in the tournament with an average of 41.50 backed by an impressive strike rate of 144.34. He was merciless against Mumbai when he smashed an unbeaten 83 of 38 balls, and Inzamam will look for a similar start from the opener in the next two pressure games.
Quotes"There is no room for complacency and we are not thinking of giving any team a leeway."
Lahore opening batsman Imran Farhat wants to keep the momentum going.