PSL-5 playoffs resume after eight months

KARACHI: The play-off of the Pakistan Super League 5 will resume on Saturday after an eight-month pandemic-enforced break.

Karachi plays Multan in the first qualifier, with the winner advancing to the final. The loser will have a second chance to reach the final by playing the winner of the eliminator on Saturday between Lahore and Peshawar.

The PSL 5 was postponed on 17th March after England batsman Alex Hales was suspected of contracting COVID-19 just an hour before the playoffs. Hales is back for Karachi, but not two of his foreign teammates, the West Indies’ Kieron Pollard and England’s Chris Jordan.

They are touring with their national teams and have been replaced by South African Wayne Parnell and West Indian Sherfane Rutherford. They will complement a team already boasting Pakistan captain Babar Azam and fast bowler Mohammad Amir.

Read more: Security plan unveiled for PSL playoffs in Karachi

Multan lost England’s James Vince and Bangladesh’s Mahmudullah after they tested positive in pre-departure COVID-19 tests.

Lahore has retained Australian batsman Ben Dunk, who has 266 runs at an average of 53.20 with a league-leading 23 sixes, and fast bowler Shaheen Afridi, who tops the bowling chart with 13 wickets in nine matches at 18.92.