There is little to choose between these two sides and their first meeting in the very first match of the Afghanistan Premier League showed just how well matched they were. Kabul Zwanan won that game by three wickets as they chased down 218/4 in what was a highly entertaining game and this match could easily follow suit.
The urgency is with Kandahar Knights coming into this game as they have to win to reach the quarter-final stage due to having the better net run rate compared to the Nangarhar Leopards so they have it all to play for.
This is desperation time for the Kandahar Knights now who are in must-win mode but they come off a demoralising loss on Tuesday in a game they should have won. They have to win this match regardless of the result of the earlier match, but they really need to improve with the bat and give their bowlers a better chance. They bowling attack is decent all round and is keeping them vaguely competitive but their batsmen have to raise their game further.
The Balkh Legends have been the best team in the APL so far but they have nothing to play for here so we may see them ease off the gas. That said, that was the case last time out against Kabul Zwanan and they smashed a staggering 244/6. The Leopards' strength clearly lies in their bowling attack and Lamichhane and company will cause the Legends more problems than most teams.
The previous match between these two teams came down to the final ball as Kabul Zwanan won by two runs and this one will likely be close too. Kabul Zwanan’s bowling unit continues to be exposed but the Knights do not have the batting firepower to take advantage of it.
Kabul Zwanan won the first match between these two teams just a couple of days ago and in matches played since then, there has been further evidence to support the same outcome here. The one major potential boost for the Leopards could revolve around team news and it remains to be seen if Russell and Lamichhane will be available.
These two teams come into this match with contrasting form and it is difficult to make a case for Kandahar Knights winning this game. They managed to lose from a good position on Thursday against Kabul Zwanan but they will be heartened by the fact that they did actually compete well in that game.
Both of these teams are coming off defeats but it is the Balkh Legends who have more reason for optimism than the Leopards. Their batting line-up looks formidable and they will fancy their chances of taking apart this Leopards bowling attack that was smashed to all parts last time out.
It has been a tough start for the Knights who are lacking all-round quality to compete here. Their batting line-up has the quality on paper but has not fired just yet and with the lack of talent in the bowling ranks, their chance of winning matches does rely heavily on their batsmen hitting some big scores.
Both of these two teams should have some of their big name overseas stars available for this match as Chris Gayle, Chris Jordan and Luke Wright should all be available. That will add a different dimension for both sides and the Panthers especially will benefit from Jordan if he does play as their bowling unit looks weak.
This series between Sri Lanka and England kicks off with five one-day matches and these will surely be much closer matches due to the conditions than if this was being played in England where the hosts would be heavily favoured. Sri Lanka have been fragile in one-day matches in recent years with their batting especially letting them down badly.
Both of these teams come into this match having won one and lost one as they try to find their feet in the tournament and settle down. Kabul Zwanan have flashed some brilliance at times in their opening two games with Laurie Evans and Rashid Khan particularly outstanding but they need more contributors in both batting and bowling departments.
The Balkh Legends looked superb in their opening match and they still have plenty of scope for improvement with Chris Gayle still to come into the side. They have a reasonably good bowling attack also which makes them a dangerous side.
Paktia have some big names in their squad and their batting line-up could take the game away from any side, but their weak bowling unit has to be a big concern. Their squad has arguably the least balance of any team.