KARACHI: Despite winning a record eight matches during the league-phase of the HBL Pakistan Super League 6, Islamabad United skipper Shadab Khan warned his charges not to get complacent during the playoffs.
Shadab identified a couple of grey areas during the post-match interview following Islamabad’s four-wicket defeat of Multan Sultans at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi late on Saturday night.
“What pleased me most as captain is the character shown by the players throughout the tournament, particular in pressure situations. Even in this game we were up against it when Multan piled up runs in quick time [racing to 93 without loss in the 10th over] but we didn’t panic and kept them to a modest score [149 all out],” Shadab said. “This exemplifies that if you are willing to put in extra yard in terms of efforts, results will automatically come in your favour as long the character and attitude are there in the mind. I’ve always maintained during [our] team meetings that collective efforts bear fruitful results and also instill confidence for the future matches.
“We never had envisaged before start of the league that we’ll win eight out of 10 games because nobody thinks on those lines. Our priority always has been to go out in the middle and express ourselves in the best possible ways. We are blessed with a side which gives one hundred percent and results are there are all to see,” the all-rounder commented.
“There are certain areas where we can make little bit of improvement. Basically I’m not a captain who demands performance from the team all the time. We just need to put more efforts to overcome those minor shortcomings because in a game where there is extra pressure [to win], we cannot afford lapses in all departments.”
Shadab was of the view that Islamabad will try to take advantage of Multan Sultans’ shortcoming in the batting department when these sides meet in Monday’s Qualifier.
“Obviously, Multan do have some issues with their batting because they have a long tail compared to our team. Therefore, the bowlers will be focusing their top-order and not let them bat deep into the innings by picking up early wickets so that the tail is exposed.”
Shadab singled out emerging pace bowler Mohammad Wasim — who claimed career-best figures of 4-31 against Multan — for special praise.
“I’m very happy to see a youngster put up his hand and perform brilliantly. Wasim has been making rapid strides and deserves accolades for his efforts and hopefully, continues to win more games for Islamabad, and get the player-of-the-match award. And If he does play international cricket in the future, I’m sure he’ll be an asset for the Pakistan side,” he said.
Meanwhile, Shan Masood admitted Multan have to step up as a batting unit if they aspire to beat Islamabad after the left-handed opener’s dismissal — for a 37-ball 59 — triggered a startling collapse during which his team lost all 10 wickets for only 56 runs.
“In hindsight one might say the defeat against a very good side [Islamabad] came as wake up call for Multan. We got a start upfront with the bat but finished quite badly, although the bowlers did a fantastic job for us by taking the match until the very end,” Shan remarked.
“That is something we’ve have to must address because we’ll be up against probably the best side in the competition on Monday. The batsmen have to take responsibility and bat right through the innings rather leave the tail to see out the death overs. It’s a good thing that the blip hit us in this game, which is a clear warning sign.”
Batsmen & mode of dismissals R B 4s 6s SR
Shan Masood c Ali Khan b Iftikhar 59 37 6 3 159.45
Mohammad Rizwan c Wasim b Fawad 26 24 4 0 108.33
Sohaib Maqsood c Shadab b Fawad 12 7 1 1 171.42
R.R. Rossouw c Faheem b Shadab 2 3 0 0 66.66
J. Charles c Shadab b Wasim 19 16 2 0 118.75
Hammad Azam c and b Faheem 9 16 0 0 56.25
Sohail Khan b Wasim 8 9 1 0 88.88
Usman Qadir c Akhlaq b Faheem 4 5 1 0 80.00
Mohammad Umar c Asif Ali b Wasim 0 1 0 0 0.00
B. Muzarabani c Hussain Talat b Wasim 0 2 0 0 0.00
Shahnawaz Dhani not out 0 0 0 0 0.00
EXTRAS (LB-1, W-9) 10 - - - --
TOTAL (all out, 20 overs) 149 - - - --
FALL OF WKTS: 1-93 (Shan Masood), 2-107 (Sohaib), 3-108 (Rizwan), 4-110 (Rossouw), 5-137 (Hammad), 6-137 (Charles), 7-147 (Usman Qadir), 8-148 (Mohammad Umar), 9-149 (Muzarabani), 10-149 (Sohail Khan).
BOWLING: Ali Khan 3-0-26-0 (4w); Faheem Ashraf 4-0-24-2 (2w); Mohammad Wasim 4-0-31-4; Fawad Ahmed 4-0-25-2 (1w); Shadab Khan 4-0-31-1; Iftikhar Ahmed 1-0-11-1 (1w).
Batsmen & mode of dismissals R B 4s 6s SR
Umar Aminc Rizwan b Dhani 13 15 1 0 86.66
Mohammad Akhlaq c Mohammad Umar b Dhani 26 15 3 2 173.33
Shadab Khan lbw b Mohammad Umar 35 27 4 1 129.62
Hussain Talat c Dhani b Muzarabani 34 33 3 0 103.03
Asif Ali c Sohaib b Usman Qadir 25 16 1 2 156.25
B.A. King b Usman Qadir 5 7 1 0 71.42
Iftikhar Ahmed not out 6 7 0 0 85.71
Mohammad Wasim not out 0 0 0 0 0.00
EXTRAS (LB-2, W-2, NB-2) 6 - - - --
TOTAL (for six wkts, 20 overs) 150 - - - --
FALL OF WKTS: 1-39 (Akhlaq), 2-58 (Umar Amin), 3-92 (Shadab), 4-133 (Asif Ali), 5-140 (King), 6-147 (Hussain Talat).
DID NOT BAT: Faheem Ashraf, Ali Khan, Fawad Ahmed.
BOWLING: Sohail Khan 4-0-36-0 (1nb, 1w); Muzarabani 2.4-0-16-1; Mohammad Umar 4-0-45-1 (1nb, 1w); Shahnawaz Dhani 4-0-21-2; Usman Qadir 4-0-22-2; Hammad Azam 1-0-8-0.
RESULT: Islamabad United won by four wickets.
UMPIRES: Aleem Dar and Rashid Riaz.
TV UMPIRE: Asif Yaqoob.
MATCH REFEREE: Mohammad Javed Malik.
PLAYER-OF-THE-MATCH: Mohammad Wasim (Islamabad United).
MONDAY’S FIXTURES: Qualifier — Islamabad United vs Multan Sultans (6:00pm PST); Eliminator 1 — Peshawar Zalmi vs Karachi Kings (11:00pm PST).
Published in Dawn, June 21st, 2021