Leading his side from the front in the final of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2023, speedster Shaheen Shah Afridi propelled Lahore Qalandars to title glory with a win over Mohammad Rizwan’s Multan Sultans in the summit clash at Lahore. Afridi-inspired Lahore Qalandars outclassed Rizwan’s Multan Sultans in the final-over thriller at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore on Saturday. Becoming the first team in the history of PSL to retain the title, defending champions Lahore Qalandars edged past Multan Sultans by 1 run on the final ball of the epic final.
With four runs needed on the final ball of the contest, Afridi teamed up with David Wiese to run out Khushdil Shah on the last delivery to seal Lahore Qalandars’ thrilling win over Multan Sultans in the close-fought final at Lahore. Multan skipper Rizwan was emotionally distraught after Lahore Qalandars recorded a stunning one-run in the summit clash of the elite Pakistani tournament.
Batting first in the PSL 2023 final, Afridi’s Lahore Qalandars posted a massive total of 200-6 in the 20-over contest. Premier batter Abdullah Shafique top-scored for Lahore Qalandars while captain Afridi played a crucial cameo to make sure his side register a gigantic total. Showcasing his batting exploits in the summit clash, Afridi smashed a 15-ball 44 against the Kieron Pollard-starrer side.
After playing a quick-fire knock for the defending champions, Afridi then delivered the goods with the ball in the high-scoring contest. Afridi removed the likes of Pollard (19), Usama Mir (0), Tim David (20) and Anwar Ali (1) to emerge as the pick of the bowlers. Afridi bagged four wickets and leaked 51 runs in 4 overs.
Chasing the daunting total, Rizwan’s Multan Sultans came close to upstaging Afridi and Co. in the PSL 2023 final. However, Afridi’s final-over heroics paved the way for Lahore Qalandars to register a 1-run win over Multan Sultans. Pakistani wicketkeeper-batter Rizwan scored 34 off 23 balls while Rilee Rossouw slammed a fighting half-century for his side in the PSL final. Lahore Qalandars skipper Afridi was named the Player of the Match for his all-round show.
“To reach the final second time and win again is a great feeling. Credit to the entire team and coaching staff for keeping us comfortable. I think it was tough early on when the momentum was swinging between them and us. But the idea was to fight till the very end and it paid off. At that time, I felt like I should go to bat and was lucky to get a few in the slot. This win is for all those Pakistani people who seek joy in PSL,” Afridi said after the match.