Tuesday Nov 17, 2020
KARACHI: Pakistan Super League will get a new winner today as first-time finalists Karachi Kings and Lahore Qalandars take on each other in the most awaited match of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020 at the National Stadium today.
Fans from both cities have begun to get restless ahead of the match, set to begin at 8pm PST. One fan, speaking to Geo News, said: "Whoever wins, it will be a victory for Pakistan."
Karachi Kings, runners-up of the league stage, secured a path to the final after defeating Multan Sultans in the Super Over of the qualifier held on November 14.
Lahore, who till now had always finished at the rock bottom in last four editions, had left everyone shocked with their turnaround in the current season to reach their maiden final after beating Multan Sultans by 25 runs in the second eliminator on Sunday.
“It will be a big game. I am really excited,” Karachi Kings skipper Imad Wasim told reporters in a virtual news conference on Monday.
“Both teams are excited. As we have made it to the final for the first-time we will try to play our best cricket as we have been playing in the event so far,” Imad said.
The Kings skipper shared that the team will stick with West Indies wicketkeeper Chadwick Walton rather than opting for Mohammad Rizwan in the final.
“He is a hard-hitting batsman and we will send him to bat at the number at which he has been playing,” said Imad to a question about the inclusion of Mohammad Rizwan.
“Lahore have been performing well but this is the final in which you have to hold your nerves and stick to your basics. In our team, we have players who can turn the match around,” said the confident Karachi skipper.
“Lahore are hard to beat but no team is unbeatable. Both teams are well-deserving finalists and good luck to both,” said the left-arm spinner.
“We made mistakes against Multan in the qualifier. People are calling us underdogs, but we are not that. We are never relaxed and have come here to win,” Imad said.
When asked whether they would make any change to the side for the final, Imad said, “We will see. Keeping in view Lahore’s strength there may be one or two changes,” he said.
On the other hand, Lahore Qalandars’ Captain Sohail Akhtar said that they had a good momentum after playing two good games in the playoffs.
“We have good momentum after playing two good matches. Karachi Kings also played a good game. Both teams are well-balanced and the fans will witness a good final,” Akhtar said.
When asked about his own performance, he said, “I did perform well in the league phase. It’s T20 cricket and one or two players perform in a game, not all.
“Every one of our players has performed and contributed to our successes which took us to the final,” he said. Lahore and Karachi have faced each other ten times in the PSL with Karachi winning six matches and Qalandars four.
In this edition, the two teams played two games against each other and won one each at their home grounds. The final will be supervised by England’s Michael Gough and Pakistan’s Aleem Dar.
Imad Wasim (Captain), Aamer Yamin, Alex Hales (England), Arshad Iqbal, Awais Zia, Babar Azam, Cameron Delport (South Africa), Chadwick Walton (West Indies), Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Sharjeel Khan, Sherfane Rutherford (West Indies), Umaid Asif, Umer Khan, Usama Mir, Waqas Maqsood, Wayne Parnel (South Africa)
Sohail Akhtar (Captain), Tamim Iqbal (Bangladesh), Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, David Wiese (South Africa), Shaheen Shah Afridi, Usman Shinwari, Samit Patel (England), Haris Rauf, Salman Irshad, Ben Dunk (Australia), Farzan Raja, Jaahid Ali, Abid Ali, Mohammad Faizan, Maaz Khan, Dane Vilas (South Africa), Dilbar Hussain.
Originally published in The News