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Will rain be the winner in today's Karachi vs Peshawar PSL showdown?

Updated March 21, 2018

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A chopper helps dry out the wet Gaddafi Stadium outfield — PSL
A chopper helps dry out the wet Gaddafi Stadium outfield — PSL

If rain permits, Karachi Kings will face Peshawar Zalmi in the last eliminator of the Pakistan Super League 2018.

Strict security measures are in place for the match which will be held at Lahore's Gaddafi Stadium, the venue of last year's PSL final.

At least two helicopters have been hovering above the stadium's pitch to dry out the wet outfield.

The Kings are sporting two major changes with Mohammad Amir leading the team, and both Shahid Afridi and Imad Wasim out of today's match due to injuries. Thee new additions to the squad include Mukhtar Ahmed, Zulfiqar Babar, and Danish Aziz.

Foreign players from the Karachi squad who have travelled to Pakistan for the playoff include Lendl Simmons, Joe Denly, Colin Ingram, Tymal Mills, David Wiese and Ravi Bopara.

Zalmi may also be in a bit of a fix as their opener, Tamim Iqbal, has flown back to Bangladesh after being injured in the previous match. Another thing that may not work in Zalmi's favour is that the team has not had a rest day after yesterday's intense showdown against the Quetta Gladiators.

Foreign players from the Zalmi squad who are in Pakistan include Darren Sammy, Andre Fletcher, Liam Dawson, Chris Jordan and Rikki Wessels.

Until now, the Kings’ bowlers have received mixed results. They were taken to cleaners often as they showed vulnerability when under attack, and that may play in Zalmi's favour as their star batsman Kamran Akmal has been in great form, barring last night's failure.

Security measures

Police authorities have beefed up security in the city ahead of the two PSL matches by deploying over 18,000 personnel.

The Pakistan Army and Punjab Rangers personnel have also been deployed in and around the stadium, airport and the hotel where the players are staying.

“The Punjab government has made security arrangements for international cricketers equal to that of the state guests,” Deputy Inspector General Operations Dr Haider Ashraf told Dawn while sharing details of the security plan.

The roads surrounding Gaddafi Stadium were cordoned off around 2pm, whereas schools in the area were dismissed at 11am.

A shuttle service will be provided to transport spectators from the designated parking spots to the venue.

After a thorough security check, visitors will be allowed to enter the stadium starting at 4pm. The match will commence at 7pm.

The weather in Lahore is cloudy, with light rain and winds expected to continue in the evening.