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A replay of last year as Multan Sultans meet Lahore Qalandars in the PSL final
Our prediction is for Multan Sultans to win
Tournament: Pakistan Super League 2023 | Format: T20 | Venue: Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore, Pakistan | Toss: To BatBet Now
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Rizwan has taken the Sultans to their third consecutive PSL final. They bowled out Qalandars for just 76 runs in the Qualifier to seal their final berth. Lahore Qalandars bounced back as they chased down a 172-run target against Peshawar Zalmi in the 2nd Eliminator to reach their second consecutive final.
Mohammad Rizwan, who won the player of the tournament award last year, will be happy to see his middle order in great form. Rilee Rossouw, Kieron Pollard, and Tim David are consistent match-winners for Multan Sultans.
Before their win over Peshawar in the Eliminator 2, Lahore Qalandars were bowled out for 76 and 110 runs in their previous two innings.
Sultans, on the other hand, were part of two very high-scoring games in Rawalpindi. The bowlers were expensive as they conceded 240+ in both innings but the batters ensured Sultans ended up on the winning side.
Qalandars did what no other team has done in Lahore this season. They successfully chased down a total. Their confidence will be high as they meet last year’s runners-up once again at the same venue.
They lost in the 2022 PSL Final against Lahore Qalandars and are now back to lay their claim on the title in 2023. The 2021 winners are on a winning streak here. Some outstanding performances helped them turn their fortunes from 3 consecutive losses to 3 wins in a row.
Before defending a 160-run total in the Qualifier, Sultans had chased down 243 and posted a 262-run total batting first in Rawalpindi.
While Rizwan will always be the key batsman in this lineup, there have been a few other batters with highlight performances in recent games. Rilee Rossouw scored 121 off 51 at number 3 against Zalmi. Opening batsman Usman Khan played a 120-run knock from just 43 balls in the next match.
The top order of Multan Sultans is sorted at the moment. What makes Sultans even more dangerous is their middle order also delivering consistently. Rilee Rossouw, Kieron Pollard, and Tim David are striking the ball at great strike rates as expected of them.
It hasn’t been an easy pitch to chase totals here in Lahore. And if the Sultans lose the toss and are put to bowl first, they will have a tough job on their hands. They would need another exceptional performance from their batters. Partnerships will be key and Rizwan will be in the anchor’s role in the batting lineup.
Mohammad Rizwan (c & wk), Usman Khan, Rilee Rossouw, Kieron Pollard, Tim David, Khushdil Shah, Anwar Ali, Usama Mir, Abbas Afridi, Sheldon Cottrell, Ihsanullah
Lahore Qalandars had lost two games in a row before they faced Peshawar Zalmi in the 2nd Eliminator of the playoffs. These losses were of a big margin - 84 and 86 runs.
And to bounce back from there with a successful run chase on a ground where no other team has managed to do it this season is a big deal.
Though there weren’t any big performances from the batting order, a fifty from Mirza Tahir Baig at the top has given them belief. Fakhar Zaman continued to fail at the top while Sam Billings and Sikandar Raza played a fine knock in the middle.
Baig and Billings added 50 runs for the 4th wicket in just 26 balls in the middle overs. That was crucial for the run chase. Qalandars also have David Wiese and Rashid Khan in the lower order. These two can play a handy knock and help finish things off with the bat.
There is no dearth of talent in the bowling attack with the likes of Rashid Khan, Haris Rauf, and skipper Shaheen Afridi. There are many wicket-taking options in this lineup and will pose a tough challenge to the opposition.
However, there is still room for improvement in the batting department. There were many key players in the top and middle who couldn’t get going and Qalandars wouldn’t like that in the final.
Mirza Tahir Baig, Fakhar Zaman, Abdullah Shafique, Sam Billings (wk), Ahsan Bhatti, Sikandar Raza, David Wiese, Rashid Khan, Shaheen Afridi (c), Haris Rauf, Zaman Khan
This pitch is a bit tricky. It helps the batters play their strokes freely in the 1st innings but gets that much more difficult in the second innings. The weather will be partly cloudy with a high of 24 degrees Celsius.
The PSL 2023 Final will be played at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. The average 1st innings in domestic T20s on this ground is 175 runs. Of the 39 matches played here, teams batting first have won 26 matches
No team has managed to successfully chase down a target in Lahore this season. Considering the conditions here, the choice is pretty straight forward. Win the toss and bat first.
This is almost a replay of the 2022 PSL final. Same finalists, same venue. Multan Sultans are on a song here with back-to-back wins. Whereas, Qalandars will have momentum after a brilliant comeback in the last game. In our squad analysis, Sultans come out on top in terms of the potential and current form. Toss can play a big role in the game. The team batting first will have the advantage. Multan Sultans, with a superior team, and better form, will start as favourites in our match prediction.
Our prediction is for Multan Sultans to win
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