Multan Sultans thrashed Karachi Kings by seven wickets in the opening game of the PSL 7 at the National Stadium Karachi.
Skipper Mohammad Rizwan remained unbeaten on 52 off 47 deliveries to chase down the target of 125 with ease. On the other side, Tim David played a decent role to help his leader in the middle.
Tahir’s crucial wickets of Sharjeel Khan in his first spell, and of Mohammad Nabi and Tom Lammonby in one over restricted Karachi to 124, which Multan overhauled with 10 balls spare.
Karachi’s Sharjeel hammered 43 off 31, clubbing three sixes and as many fours, in the 66-run opening stand with Babar Azam.
Multan opener Shan Masood scored 26 off 18 to provide a solid start with a partnership worth 38 runs, before Rizwan and Sohaib Maqsood (30 off 31) added 63 for the second wicket.
“It is a special feeling. I cannot put it in words. I am very happy I delivered what the team demanded of me and I hope my team and I continue to do what we did today. It is always good to be back in Pakistan. I am from here and my family is here.
“Hopefully, I will see all of my lovely friends after the tournament. We had a lovely crowd today, so I want to thank them for coming out to support us and the game of cricket, which is really nice to see in this sad time we are living in. I am looking forward to the next three weeks,” Imran Tahir, who’s the Man of the Match said at the post-match presentation.
Multan Sultans beat Karachi Kings by 7 wickets – scores in brief:
Karachi Kings 124-5, 20 overs (Sharjeel Khan 43, Joe Clarke 26, Babar Azam 23; Imran Tahir 3-16)
Multan Sultans 126-3, 18.2 overs, (Mohammad Rizwan 52 not out, Sohaib Maqsood 30, Shan Masood 26; Mohammad Nabi 2-17)
The PSL officially began on Jan 27 but it’s been in Pakistan’s top Twitter trends for days before it was even inaugurated. That alone speaks for the excitement brewing in the country for the tournament.
Naturally, the curtain raiser was live streamed by thousands who found the short-lived ceremony energising and got them hyped up for the first match between the Karachi Kings and Multan Sultans at 8pm.
The opening ceremony consisted of three parachute athletes skydiving with the ball that was to be used in the first match, PM of Pakistan Imran Khan’s opening video and a live performance of the PSL anthem by Atif Aslam and Aima Baig.
The curtain-raiser was preceded by a documentary exploring the history of Pakistani cricket.
Love for cricket has infected Pakistanis once again and netizens are flooding Twitter with their reactions to the curtain-raiser.