Sohaib Maqsood (46) is leading the Multan Sultans’ fight against Lahore Qalandars as the Mohammad Rizwan-led side reached 87 for the loss of three wickets after 10 overs against Lahore Qalandars in match number 28 of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 6 at Abu Dhabi’s Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium.
Maqsood has hit some impressive shots in the match so far, as he helps his team keep the scoreboard ticking despite losing three wickets — Shan Masood, Mohammad Rizwan, and Johnson Charles.
On the first ball of the match, in-from Masood was out lbw, as Shaheen Shah Afridi gave a golden start to the Qalandars. The undeterred Sultans, however, kept the scoreboard ticking.
The Sultans’ batsmen read James Faulkner’s deliveries well, as his overs (second and fourth) proved expensive for the Qalandars.
In the fifth over, Rizwan thrashed Haris Rauf, but at the end of the over, Rauf got the upper hand as he dismissed the Sultans’ skipper for 15.
Charles (10) fell lbw in the eighth over after spinner Rashid Khan appealed for a review, as the umpire had earlier declared Charles not out.
Maqsood and Rilee Rossouw (4) are on the crease as they seek a good partnership to put up a competitive score against Qalandars.
The Qalandars are desperate to avoid any if-and-but situation in today’s match as they look to cement their place in the tournament’s playoffs.
The Qalandars started the PSL on a remarkable note, winning five out of its first six games before losing three consecutive matches. Once considered favourites to win the sixth edition of the PSL, the team has now put themselves in a position where they can be knocked out of the race.
The Sohail Akhtar-led side has got 10 points from nine games and the match against Sultans is their last in the league stages. They have a net run rate (NRR) of -2.02 and placed currently in the third position. Peshawar Zalmi with NRR or 0.586 and 10 points in 10 games is at 2nd place.
Multan is at 4th place with eight points frpm eight games followed by Karachi with eight points from nine games.
The match tonight is a must-win for Qalandars. A win will not only confirm Lahore’s place in the play-offs but will also put them in second position. However, if they lose tonight, the situation can get dangerous for the Qalandars.
A win for Multan would mean that the Sultans will also have 10 points and their NRR would improve from the current 0.836. The Sultans already have one match left against Islamabad United after which all eyes would then be on the Karachi Kings vs Quetta Gladiators clash.
If Qalandars fail tonight, then they will surely hope for Quetta Gladiators to beat Karachi Kings on Saturday.
Lahore Qalandars: Sohail Akhtar (capt.), Fakhar Zaman, Agha Salman, Mohammad Hafeez, Ben Dunk (wk), Tim David, James Faulkner, Rashid Khan, Ahmed Daniyal, Shaheen Afridi, Haris Rauf.
Multan Sultans XI: Mohammad Rizwan (wk/capt), Shan Masood, Sohaib Maqsood, Rilee Rossouw, Johnson Charles, Khushdil Shah, Sohail Tanvir, Imran Tahir, Blessing Muzarabani, Shahnawaz Dahani, Imran Khan.