“Deano Would Have Been Proud”. Babar Azam Sets a remarkable win for Karachi in the final against Lahore with a match-winning half-century
Karachi Kings has become champions for the first time after defeating Lahore Qalandars with 5 wickets in hand at National Stadium Karachi on Tuesday.
There is Babar Azam everywhere to steal appreciation. No doubt, his unbeaten 63*(49) has confirmed the victory but there are other undiscussed, un-appreciated and underrated stars which include Umaid Asif, Waqas Maqsood and Arshad Iqbal who built the first steps of success in this match with their exceptional bowling.
The trio set the foundation with amazing pace and slowers to keep things under control, later Babar Azam played smoothly build the innings with his amazing half-century to win the match in 2nd last over.
Three of them bowled 12 overs for Karachi, gave only 62 runs and picked up 6 wickets – 2 each. These players never played big matches but they proved worthy enough to set Lahore Qalanadar’s batsman in the defensive gear till the end.
From 68-0 as an opening partnership, they managed to keep the score at 137/7. The opening pair started slow which panicked the other batsman to move things with faster pace but they failed to do that and kept losing wickets.
Lahore Qalandars won the toss and elected to bat first which they could only take to 137/7 in 20 overs. The lead runs scorer were Tamim Iqbal 35 (38), Fakhar Zaman 27 (24) and Sohail Akhtar 14 (14). Waqas Maqsood, Umaid Asif and Arshad Iqbal each took double wickets.
Karachi Kings while batting second did not panic at all with Babar Azam’s amazing lead role till the end.
They chased the target easily in the 2nd last over with Imad Wasim, the skipper hitting the boundary to finish the match. The lead runs scorer was Babar Azam 63*(49), Chadwick Walton 22 (27) and Sharjeel Khan 13 (12). Dilbar Hussain and Haris Rauf both took double wickets while Samit Patel took the only wicket.
Imad Wasim is terribly proud of the way the bowlers executed their plans.
“We knew if Babar put on a masterclass we could effectively put our feet up in the chase. Arshad Iqbal was an emerging cricketer but he played a crucial role for us today. Dean Jones, of course, gets credit because what he taught us very few coaches in the world can. Wasim Akram, of course, deserves the trophy because he was our bowling coach, head coach, mentor and team president rolled in one.”
Babar Azam wins the Player of the Tournament award, too!
“I just needed to remain cool. The team was depending on me and I needed not to panic. The wicket as slow and I wasn’t feeling the ball on the bat very well. I feel the calmer you are, the better you perform. I just knew I had to be there at the finish, and in the end, we chased it with ease.”
Lahore Qalandars skipper, Sohail Akhtar congratulates Karachi Kings.
“Getting here is a big achievement for us. We played excellent cricket, and everyone bought into the project. I think I’m very fortunate to be leading such a wonderful franchise. I’d love to thank our senior players, people like Ben Dunk and Mohammad Hafeez who supported me. The wicket was slow, and we were at least 20 runs short today.”