Last night after a mesmerising opening ceremony, the third edition of PSL was officially commenced. The first match of PSL 3 was between Defending champions Peshawar Zalmi and debutants Multan Sultans.
After winning the toss, Sultan’s captain Shoaib Malik opted to bowl first.
Zalmis opened with their leading run-scorer of last season Kamran Akmal and Bangladeshi Tamim Iqbal, whereas Sohail Tanvir bowled first over for the Sultans.
Sohail Tanvir began his over aggressively and appealed on the very first ball.
Multan’s opening bowling pair was aggressive and maintained pressure on Zalmis.
The pitch was grassy and was expected to be difficult for pacers.
But, second over was given to Muhammad Irfan. Again on the second ball, out was given by the on-field umpire but was reversed by third umpire.
On the second last ball of the over, Kamran Akmal was caught by Viljoen on Irfan’s ball. Zalmi’s lost their first wicket on 4 runs.
Hafeez came to bat as Kami departed. Hafeez slowly and steadily achieved his half century as well.
In fourth over, Irfan again had the bowl and this time Tamim became the target and was dismissed after scoring 11 runs.
Zalmis lost their second wicket on 22 runs.
Dwayne Smith knew that his teammate Hafeez is struggling hard so he bashed 24 of 22 balls but not for so long as he was dismissed by Imran Tahir’s goggly in the 10th over.
Hairs Sohail had the chance to impress selectors and secure his slot in the national team but he couldn’t stay for long on the pitch and was sent back to the pavilion after scoring 14 off 15. He was dismissed by Viljoen.
Then came the Skipper Sammy. He played a brief but much needed knock. Zalmis that were struggling at 101 after 16 overs, with the help of Sammy, they managed to score 36 runs off their last 10 balls.
Hafeez who scored 59 off 52 balls was the highest run-scorer of Zalmis. And Sammy scored important 29 runs off just 11 balls.
Junaid Khan took 2 wickets on his comeback and Tanvir, Tahir and Viljoen managed to bag one wicket each.
Zalmis finished at 151 runs. Now the Sultans had to score 151 runs to mark their presence in the 2 years old Pakistan Super League.
Former Srilankan batsman Kumar Sangakkara and Ahmad Shehzad opened for the Sultans. And Chris Jorden opened for the Zalmis.
Opener Ahmad Shahzad failed to mark any impact as he was dismissed on duck by Wahab Riaz with his Mitchell Johnson look.
Shoaib Maqsood made the chase bit easy for the debutants by smashing 15 runs in Hammad Azam’s over. And Sangakkara was sensible and persistent with his bat.
Sultans lost their second wicket in 9th over when Shoaib Maqsood was dismissed by Asghar. At this stage Sultans were 54-2.
Asghar bowled extremely well and finished his spell of 4 overs for 1/8. The required run rate was rising and Sultans were in bit trouble as Wahab Riaz dismissed Sangakkara as well.
Sangakkara played a sensible and much needed knock of 57 runs off 51 balls.
Sultans needed 46 runs off 31 balls, with Malik and Pollard on crease. They both played extremely well and finished in style.
Malik hit a straight six on the first ball of last over and Sultans sealed their first victory by defeating the defending champions.
Wahab with Johnson’s look finished his spell of four overs for 19/2.