The 2022 edition of the Pakistan Super League begins with a high-octane clash between Karachi Kings and Multan Sultans on Thursday at National Stadium in Karachi. Both teams reached the playoffs last year.
Karachi Kings, failed to make it to the summit clash, while Multan Sultans went on to win the title after beating Peshawar Zalmi in the finals. Here’s a look at how the two teams stack up ahead of the first match of the PSL 2022.
KAR vs MUL: Match Preview, PSL 2022- Karachi Kings vs Multan Sultans, Pakistan Super League 2022 Match 01
Karachi Kings is a team that has consistently reached the playoffs. However, they couldn’t make it to the finals on most occasions.
Last year, they again reached the playoffs but lost Peshawar Zalmi in the Eliminator 1. Ahead of a new season, Karachi Kings would be hoping to not only make the playoffs but also play well in the knockouts and win the title.
Pakistan skipper, Babar Azam has taken over the onus to lead the team this year. Karachi have put faith in the core of the squad as they have retained as many as eight players for the upcoming season.
The Pakistan players who have been retained are Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir, Sharjeel Khan, Aamer Yamin, Mohammad Ilyas. As far as the foreign retentions are concerned, they have continued to put faith in Mohammad Nabi and Joe Clarke.
In a bid to bolster the pace department, they have added England seamer in Chris Jordan. Though, he will join the team later during the tournament. Besides, Lewis Gregory has also been added to the squad to address the lower-order batting issues.
Overall, the team looks quite sorted in all departments. At the top of the order, they have three gun players in Babar Azam, Joe Clarke, and Sharjeel Khan.
As for the middle-order, the presence of M Nabi, Imad Wasim and Lewis Gregory should keep the team in good stead. The trio will not only add depth in the batting department but also build a strong bowling unit.
As for the pace bowling options, they have got the likes of Chris Jordan, Mohammad Amir, and M Ilyas to name a few. Karachi Kings don’t have a lot of quality pace bowlers and this could be one big concern for them this year.
Given how they played in the first leg of PSL last year, nobody expected them to make a dramatic turnaround in the second half of the tournament. Multan Sultans dished out impressive performances in the second leg and went on to win the tournament. They would look to defend the title ahead of the upcoming edition of the tournament.
Multan Sultans opted to retain seven players, namely Mohammad Rizwan, Rilee Rossouw, Sohaib Maqsood, Imran Tahir, Shan Masood, Khushdil Shah, and Shahnawaz Dahani.
They have a strong top-order, comprising of M Rizwan, S Maqsood, and Shan Masood. The trio played exceptionally well last year and the franchise would be hoping them to replicate similar performances this year as well.
As for the middle-order, they have added Tim David, who has got the ability to capitalize the starts in middle overs. Besides, the presence of R Rossouw and Khushdil Shah should make them confident of posting big totals on the board.
The variety in the bowling attack should make them a team to beat this year. Shahnawaz Dahani was the breakthrough star last year. He picked the most wicket in the tournament last year.
Dahani will be supported by the likes of Dawid Willey and Blessing Muzarabani. In Imran Tahir, they have an experienced spinner who can help the team reach far in the tournament.