KARACHI: It’s a dream week for cricket lovers in Karachi. The City of Lights has welcomed the Pakistan Super League action with open arms, and the sold-out crowds at the National Stadium are proof of our love for this sport.
With four matches of the ongoing PSL hosted by Karachi so far and four more tantalising fixtures awaiting the fans this week, here are our favourite moments from cricket’s homecoming:
Foreign cricketers enjoy biryani feast
Karachi ao aur biryani na khao? That can’t happen. Foreign cricketers of the Islamabad United squad were treated to a big feast of the traditional Sindhi biryani, cooked by Rumman Raees’ mother. And they loved it. Luke Ronchi gave a thumbs up. Others looked a bit overwhelmed and were speechless.
Sammy – a Pakistani at heart
Peshawar Zalmi skipper Darren Sammy is loving his adventures in Karachi. The former Windies captain has already donned the traditional shalwar kameezand feels right at home in it.
What’s more, he won the Pakistanis’ hearts (all over again) when he visited the Quaid Mausoleum holding the national flag.
He also planted a tree at Governor House as part of the Clean & Green Campaign. You belong here, Sammy!
Afridi’s lap of honour
An entire generation of cricket fans in Pakistan grew up adoring star all-rounder Shahid ‘Boom Boom’ Afridi without having had the opportunity to see him in action on home turf. But with the revival of international cricket, a dream came true for the fans when they saw Lala play in front of them.
At the end of Multan Sultans vs Lahore Qalandars match on Monday, the evergreen superstar waved to his fans as he undertook a lap of honour to acknowledge the euphoric crowd. What a heartwarming moment that was, both for him and his fans.
Cricket fans of Karachi and Shahid Afridi. Indeed, no better combination than that!
Amir’s emotional tribute to his mother
Only just back in the team after his mother passed away, Mohammad Amir took three wickets for Karachi Kings against Peshawar Zalmi.
He celebrated his first one with an emotional tribute to his late mother that left us teary-eyed. After bowling out Liam Dawson, the fast bowler looked up and pointed to the heavens.
Shinwari’s last over floors Gladiators
Sunday’s Karachi Kings vs Quetta Gladiators match is one to remember for years. Just when it seemed Quetta would chase down the 191 target like a breeze, Usman Shinwari demolished their hopes with three wickets in the last over, defending five runs to take his team to a one-run victory.
This match was not for the faint-hearted.