Karachi Kings and Pakistan star all-rounder Shahid Afridi will keep his fingers crossed as he awaits results of an MRI scan of his knee.
Afridi enjoyed a superb start to the third edition of the Pakistan Super League, picking up six wickets in three games. But he looks set for some time on the sidelines after picking up a knee injury with Karachi looking to preserve him for the business end of the tournament.
“Apologies to all my fans who came to watch me play today. Getting an MRI done for my knee. Need your prayers. Will get back soon Inshallah,” Afridi tweeted on Friday as the match between Karachi and Multan Sultans in Sharjah got abandoned due to rain.
My appologies to all my fans who came to watch me play today. Getting an MRI done for my knee. Need your prayers. Will get bak soon inshallah pic.twitter.com/oWAQKtf4mC— Shahid Afridi (@SAfridiOfficial) March 2, 2018
Karachi coach Mickey Arthur said given the quality that Afridi brings to the table, the management will monitor his fitness carefully.
“Rather than pushing him to play today we will preserve him for the back end of the tournament,” Arthur was quoted as saying.
Afridi turned 38 on Thursday and knee injuries can become particularly difficult to recover from at that age.
At Sharjah Stadium, needing 142 to win, the defending champions were staring at another defeat when Sabbir Rahman was removed with the score 125-5 with nine balls remaining.
But skipper Sammy led from the front to end the game 16no from just four deliveries. He smashed a much-needed six on his first ball before repeating the feat two balls later.
The West Indian then held his nerve to score a match-winning boundary with two balls to spare for what was Peshawar’s second victory of the tournament. Tamim Iqbal had top-scored with 36 before being run-out for Peshawar.
“I just needed to hit three sixes, that’s what I told the coach,” said Sammy, who was named man of the match. “Even if you hobble it’s okay, just get a six.
“It’s a great feeling to make the team win. Games against Quetta have always been classics.
“I told myself: just two big hits and we could win. I believed myself, and it came off.”
Earlier, Quetta had posted 141-8 with Australian all-rounder Shane Watson top-scoring with 47. His knock came off 32 deliveries, including five sixes and a four.
He was one of four players to reach double figures as Umaid Asif (2-18), Wahab Riaz (2-16) and Sammy (2-21) were among those to take wickets.
For Quetta captain Sarfraz Ahmed, he lamented the batting performance of his players.
“We need to improve our batting. We should’ve scored a bit more. We also need a bit more variation with our bowling,” he said.
A two-member tribunal also handed Hasan a fine of Rs1 million for his role regarding the spot-fixing allegations.
“Hasan has been banned for one year and fined one million rupees on one charge and we have requested for more action against him on inducing other players for fixing,” PCB legal adviser Taffazul Rizvi told the Dawn.
A member of the 2009 World Twenty20 winning Pakistan team, Hasan was suspended from all cricketing activities after being charge-sheeted by the PCB along with five others on March 18, 2017 for various breaches pertaining to the anti-corruption code. Sharjeel Khan, Khalid Latif, Mohammad Nawaz, Nasir Jamshed and Mohammad Irfan were the others to be charged in the spot-fixing case.
He had been playing for the Karachi Kings in the concerned edition of the PSL. Following the verdict on Wednesday, Hasan’s lawyer Kashif Rajwana has said that the one-year ban will be applied retrospectively and will hence end in March.
Hasan has played three ODIs and 10 T20Is for Pakistan, with his last appearance in national team colours coming all the way back in 2010. His sole one-day half-century had come against Bangladesh in an Asia Cup 2019 clash at Dambulla.