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HomeSportsCricketPCL 9 Will Kick-off Tomorrow

PCL 9 Will Kick-off Tomorrow

The ninth edition of the PSL is all set to commence tomorrow, when Lahore Qalandars, two-time champions (2022 and 2023), will take on Islamabad United, who are also two-time champions (2016 and 2018), in the opening fixture at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.

The thrilling match between the two sides is expected to begin at 8pm, according to Pakistan time.

In the double-header, the afternoon match will begin at 2pm, while the first ball of the evening match will be bowled at 7pm. The matches taking place during Ramadan will begin at 9pm.

It is pertinent to mention here that the Lahore stadium will host its first opening ceremony of the PSL. 

The ceremony will kick off at 630pm with an array of exciting performances from renowned artist Arif Lohar, Natasha Baig, pop band Noori, and the singers of the PSL 9 anthem song Ali Zafar and Aima Baig. Fans will also be treated to spectacular fireworks and a mesmerising laser show.

The tournament will see four cities, Karachi, Lahore, Multan, and Rawalpindi host 34 matches of the marquee event.

As per the details, Lahore stadium will host nine matches, which includes Qalandars playing five matches on their home turf.

The picturesque Multan Cricket Stadium will host five matches – all Multan Sultans fixtures. Lahore and Multan will host the first leg of the league from 17 to 27 February before action moves to Karachi and Rawalpindi.

Pindi Cricket Stadium in Rawalpindi will host nine matches from March 2 to 10 with United featuring in five matches. Peshawar Zalmi will play four of their 10 matches in Rawalpindi, while Quetta Gladiators will play three matches at the Pindi Cricket Stadium.

Karachi’s National Bank Stadium will host 11 matches including the grand finale on March 18. The home side Karachi Kings will play at least five matches at the venue, while Gladiators will get to play at least three at the stadium.

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Captains’ thoughts

United’s skipper Shadab Khan said: “I have been captain of Islamabad United for the last four seasons and I want to lift the trophy for my team this season.”

“The additions of Imad Wasim and the Shah brothers are a huge boost for the franchise. Faheem Ashraf and Azam Khan are two vital cogs in our team. I want my team to stand tall in high-pressure games and get over the line.”

He said they had evaluated their mistakes from the last season and were looking forward to executing their plans aptly that time around.

Kings captain Shan Masood remarked: “To represent and lead my hometown team Karachi in the PSL is such a huge honour.”

“It is a rebuilding process for Karachi Kings, where we are looking to build a core group of young players who can serve the franchise for the next five years.”

He said they had a great chance to do well given the last part of the tournament was set to take place in Karachi.

Qalandars’ Shaheen Shah Afridi said: “I am genuinely excited to be leading Lahore Qalandars for the third consecutive season in PSL and the hunt for a hat-trick of titles makes me eager to do well.”

He said they were eying a third PSL win this time and he could assure the people that his team would show the same intensity as they have done in the past two seasons.

“Lahore Qalandars are proud of having a strong fan base and our games in Lahore are going to be jam-packed,” he added.

Sultans skipper Mohammad Rizwan said: “PSL is a world-class league and we are all proud to be a part of this league.”

Multan’s pacers and emerging players had dominated the previous two seasons and that was one of the reasons of Sultans doing well consistently, he added.

Rizwan said this season they had got a strong squad as well and would look to maintain the standards.

“Multan crowds have given us a lot of love over the last two seasons and hopefully, they will again support us with the same enthusiasm this year,” he added.

Zalmi captain Babar Azam claimed: “Peshawar Zalmi has been one of the most exciting sides in PSL history and with our current squad we are well poised to emerge as champions in this season.”

He said some of the players were highly talented and gifted in their bowling and batting departments which gives Zalmi an edge over other teams.

Gladiators skipper Rilee Rossouw said: “The opportunity to lead a side in PSL doesn’t come around often and it is such an honor for me.”

“My expectation this season is to obviously win the PSL 9. As a side, we will try to make it a high-performance arena.”

He further said that he thought conditions in Karachi and Lahore would suit Gladiators and that was where they would look to bag the most points.

Squads

The six participating teams have beefed up their 20-member squads ahead of the event starting tomorrow.

Islamabad United

Shadab Khan (captain), Alex Hales, Azam Khan, Colin Munro, Faheem Ashraf, Haider Ali, Imad Wasim, Jordan Cox, Matthew Forde, Mohammad Waseem, Naseem Shah, Obed McCoy, Qasim Akram, Rumman Raees, Salman Ali Agha, Shahab Khan and Tymal Mills

Emerging: Hunain Shah, Shamyl Hussain and Ubaid Shah

Karachi Kings

Shan Masood (captain), Anwar Ali, Arafat Minhas, Blessing Muzarabani, Daniel Sams, Hassan Ali, James Vince, Kieron Pollard, Leus Du Plooy, Mir Hamza, Mohammad Akhlaq, Mohammad Amir Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Shoaib Malik and Tabraiz Shamsi

Emerging: Fawad Ali, Irfan Khan Niazi, Mohammad Rohid, Saad Baig and Sirajuddin

Lahore Qalandars

Shaheen Shah Afridi (captain), Abdullah Shafique, Ahsan Hafeez Bhatti, Dan Lawrence, David Wiese, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Kamran Ghulam, Lorcan Tucker, Mirza Tahir Baig, Mohammad Imran Jnr, Rassie van der Dussen, Sahibzada Farhan, Salman Fayyaz, Shai Hope, Sikandar Raza and Zaman Khan

Emerging: Jahandad Khan, Syed Faridoun Mahmood and Tayyab Abbas

Multan Sultans

Mohammad Rizwan (captain), Abbas Afridi, Aftab Ibrahim, Chris Jordan, David Willey, Dawid Malan, Iftikhar Ahmad, Ihsanullah, Johnson Charles, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Ali, Olly Stone, Reeza Hendricks, Shahnawaz Dahani, Tayyab Tahir, Usama Mir and Usman Khan

Emerging: Faisal Akram, Mohammad Shahzad and Yasir Khan

Peshawar Zalmi

Babar Azam (captain), Aamir Jamal, Arif Yaqoob, Arshad Iqbal, Asif Ali, Daniel Mousley, Luke Wood, Mohammad Haris, Paul Walter, Rovman Powell, Saim Ayub, Salman Irshad, Sufyan Muqeem, Tom Kohler-Cadmore, Umair Afridi and Waqar Salamkheil

Emerging: Aimal Khan, Haseebullah Khan, Mehran Mumtaz and Mohammad Zeeshan

Quetta Gladiators

Rilee Rossouw (captain), Abrar Ahmad, Bismillah Khan, Jason Roy, Laurie Evans, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Hasnain, Mohammad Wasim Jr, Omair bin Yousuf, Sajjad Ali Jnr, Sarfaraz Ahmad, Saud Shakeel, Sherfane Rutherford, Sohail Khan, Umar Amin, Usman Qadir, Usman Tariq and Will Smeed

Emerging: Adil Naz and Khawaja Mohammad Nafay

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