PSL 6 Final: Multan Sultans looking to win maiden title against Peshawar

DailyTimes  |  Jun 24, 2021

 

This PSL was perhaps the most controversial of all, as it had stopped midway because of positive Covid-19 cases in the bio- secure bubble. Alas, it was decided that the PSL would take place in June, but even that was in issue. The PSL was shifted to UAE, meaning there were a lot of complications. At first, it seemed fine, but then everything went wrong. Some players failed to get visas to get into the UAE and some cameramen and officials, especially from South Africa and India were not allowed into the UAE. A June 1st date became June 3rd, and a June 3rd date became a June 9th one. There were many complications, but, finally, after many months of waiting, Pakistani cricket fans finally got to experience the rest of PSL 6.

We had 3 weeks of heartbreak, entertainment, high heartbeats and joy, but it is down to one final game. Peshawar Zalmi Vs Multan Sultans.

Multan will be looking to win their first ever title and against Peshawar, that seems very viable. In the 8 fixtures that they have played against Peshawar since they entered into PSL in 2018, they have won 5. Multan Sultans bounced back well in this Abu Dhabi leg of the PSL, jumping from 5th place to second place, with their captain Muhammad Rizwan leading from the front, both with captaincy and batting. The fight that they have fought and the way that they have gone about their cricket will give them confidence going into the final, but the pressure still may be too much to absorb. For Peshawar, this is their fourth time going into the PSL final, the highest for any team in PSL. However, they have had a bad time going into the final, winning only once with the 3 times that they have gone into the final so far. They will be hoping for a second PSL title with people like Hazratullah Zaizai, Wahab Riaz and Mohammad Irfan hoping to perform.

Multan, though, have probably produced the best batters and bowlers so far in this tournament. Sohaib Maqsood, often looked upon as an underdog has performed very well for them, being the 3rd highest run getter in the tournament, scoring 363 runs in 11 matches at an average of 40.33 and at an astonishing strike rate of 152. They have also produced Shahnawaz Dahani- the leading wicket taker of PSL 6 with over 20 wickets in the tournament. These numbers was really the driving factor that helped Multan get into the final, and they will be hoping that these numbers can continue or possibly even go higher.

Talking to the media on the eve of the final, Wahab felt that the reason why Peshawar was so successful during this campaign was because of the environment of the team.

“Ours is a side in which each and every individual, regardless of their age or status, functions in key roles. [Head coach] Darren Sammy and [team director] Mohammad Akram have given us freedom to enjoy each other’s successes and moreover, they [Sammy and Akram] never try to pinpoint the faults unnecessarily and their attitude has allowed to play good cricket as a combined unit,”

Rizwan, meanwhile, expressed his utter joy of reaching the final, after seeming that it was not possible with one out of 5 wins during the Karachi leg of the tournament.

“This is a kind of bounce back for Multan to get into the final. It would be totally unfair on my part to single out players who have taken the side this far when it was quite evident we’ll probably not make it to the playoffs,” Rizwan told reporters during an online conference.

“I think we were lacking the momentum in Karachi where we were getting into the final stages but not finishing the game. But over here [in Abu Dhabi], we sat down and discussed where we’re going wrong and worked on those weak areas to get into the rhythm. Now everyone is contributing. The batsmen are getting enough runs to give bowlers something to bowl at, and vice versa. We have definitely gelled as a team that believes in winning the final and that self-belief Insha’Allah will make all of Multan Sultans supporters very, very proud.”

Both teams will be under pressure for sure. Peshawar will try and clinch their second title in PSL, and Multan will try to create history and win their first ever HBL PSL title. Best of luck to both teams and may the best team win.

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