Imad, Rizwan and Shadab declare PSL one of the best

Our Correspondent
Wednesday, Feb 08, 2023

LAHORE: Imad Wasim, Mohammad Rizwan and Shadab Khan, captains of Karachi Kings, Multan Sultans and Islamabad United, respectively, have declared Pakistan Super League (PSL) the best in the world.

The three cricketers spoke with PCB Digital on cricket matters, especially the upcoming eighth edition of the PSL.

Imad said: “PSL is one of the best leagues in the world and it is very close to our hearts. We wait for this league for the year round and prepare, plan and set goals. Then, we enter into this great event to achieve our collective objectives, help our sides win and this cycle continues.

“Last year, Karachi Kings were hampered with injuries, but for 2023, we have all bases covered with high-quality players who all are match-winners. The most important thing for us is to play T20 the way it should be played.

“We will go step-by-step and match-by-match in this tournament with our first target being to secure a place in the play-offs. One of the best things about this HBL PSL is we will have home matches. So, we are aiming to make the best use of our first five matches at home and build the momentum that can carry us into the play-offs.

“This year, every side is equally balanced and it is difficult to predict an outright winner. All sides boast some outstanding talent and they will enter the event with different combinations and strengths. This clearly reflects how the HBL PSL has evolved and why it has now become an extremely challenging and exciting league.”

Rizwan stated: “I missed a few matches in the early part of the HBL PSL, but I will not blame anyone. It is all part of the game as each side has its own strategy and game plan, but I am now giving importance to each match I play so that I can make up for the lost time. Captaincy and batting can be challenging, but we have a good group of people who have not only empowered me but also back and support me so that I can strike the right balance and continue to give my best.

“The philosophy of Multan Sultans is simple: play as champions irrespective of the opposition or the outcome. Consequently, we are not afraid of the results. We have been able to induce this approach in the side because we are a closely-knit side and the credit for this cohesion must be given to the team management. Also, we have a good mix and combination of coaches, which also helps me to captain the side.

“It is always challenging to face Shaheen Afridi, Naseem Shah, Haris Rauf and Hasan Ali. And this doesn’t only apply to me but to all the batters as they are seriously quick and effective bowlers with plenty of variety. But it works both ways as we know each other’s strengths and weaknesses.”

Shadab said: “What I am today is solely due to HBL PSL. I entered this competition as an Emerging Category player, but this tournament gave me the opportunity, belief and confidence to grow and develop as a cricketer and I am pleased that I am now a Platinum Category player.

“When I started my cricket, I thought I could be a good U19 or domestic cricketer, but then I got the opportunity in HBL PSL 1 where I was able to deceive and trouble the then world’s best batter Kumar Sangakkara with my wrong’un or leg-spin. This turned things around for me as I started believing in myself and now I can play in any competition, against any opponent and in any tournament with the conviction that I can perform.”