Lahore Qalandars 138 for 6 (Sohail Akhtar 39, Devcich 28, Umer Khan 2-25) beat Karachi Kings 116 (Rizwan 34, Haris Rauf 4-23, Rahat Ali 3-19, Afridi 2-20) by 22 runs
How the game played out
The odds were stacked against Lahore Qalandars at the halfway mark against Karachi Kings, a side that's had their number for the last three years. Defending 138, it was the young pace attack of Mohammad Hafeez's side that refused to give in, with 18-year old Shaheen Afridi leading from the front, while Haris Rauflanded crucial blows towards the end. Karachi never could get a head of steam, with wily changes of pace and disciplined bowling by both fast bowlers and spinners ensuring the asking rate continued to creep up. It was an easy win in the end, Lahore ensuring Imad Wasim's team fell 22 runs short.
Batting just not good enough - Arthur
Coach Mickey Arthur was critical of Karachi Kings' batsmen after the side failed to chase down 139. While he praised Lahore Qalandars' bowling as "exceptional" he admitted that the failure of the top order had left the side with too much to do in the chase, specially as they went into the last five overs with the required run rate at nearly ten.
"We just didn't bat well enough," Arthur said. "As simple as that. I still think at the rain break we left ourselves with too much to do. At the time-out we needed ten an over. Okay, we had seven wickets in hand but it was still far out. When you chase 138 (139) you should never get to needing ten off the last five. It was poor. We didn't bat well enough and will go back and reassess. It's important we learn from this, as a batting unit, just not good enough."
Much as Lahore had in the opening game, they got off to a fast start, this time thanks to Sohail Akhtar, whose 25-ball 39 was the dominant performance of the early stages. But from 64 for 1 after eight overs, Karachi chiseled their way back thanks to teenage left-arm spinner Umer Khan. He built the pressure on Akhtar before forcing him to hole out, before getting the big wicket of AB de Villiers to strike a dagger into the Lahore innings. From thereon, it was only cameos from Lahore, but their bowlers ensured the 138 posted was more than enough.
Even though tight lines from Lahore's bowlers meant Karachi required 49 from the last five overs, they had eight wickets in hand with Colin Ingram and Mohammad Rizwan at the crease. But the collapse that followed after the rain break meant they gave themselves little chance to come back into the game. The last eight wickets fell for only 26 runs, with the chasing side bowled out with a ball to spare. The DLS method might have had them losing by nine runs at the rain delay but the true scale of the defeat was in fact significantly greater.
Star of the day
Having never played in the Pakistan first-class system, Haris Rauf stood tall in a team that comprises big names of the international game. He came through the talent hunt programme that Lahore Qalandars have in place, with the side impressed by his ability to bowl in excess of 150kph. He consistently hit the high 140s during his spell on Saturday, and was playing just his fourth T20 overall. That inexperience never really showed as he hit his lengths with impeccable accuracy, and he was the one who put paid to any hopes that Karachi might have harboured with figures of 4-0-23-4.
Rauf considered his performance an appropriate reward for all the time and effort Lahore had invested in his development.
"They have worked very hard with me. I was selected in 2017 from the Player Development Programme and then they picked me for their academy and sent me to Australia, where I trained, and after my return, I stayed with them at the academy. Aqeeb bhai worked with me, Sameen bhai and Ateeq bhai have supported me. I had also played in the Abu Dhabi Cup and helped Lahore Qalandars win. That match was in my mind because it was a similar situation ( to the Abu Dhabi Cup ) and I stuck to my strengths and we won the match. "It was important for me to help them to a victory, the way they had worked on me, it was my responsibility to help the side."
The big miss:
Mentioning him twice in a row might constitute cyber-bullying, but it's hard to look past de Villiers failing to get going for the second time in as many matches. Having shown us a sneak peak of what could be expected from him with a cameo against Islamabad United, Lahore fans couldn't wait for him to bring his best in the match that arguably matters more than any other throughout the competition - Lahore vs Karachi. Instead, de Villiers' innings lasted just five balls, having added just three runs. He did get a shot at redemption in the second innings, however, when he took over the captaincy after Hafeez was forced off with a nasty thumb injury. A few key decisions he made - notably giving Rauf the ball just after he had dropped a simple catch - turned out well in a game his side ended up comfortably winning.
Where the teams stand
There's a harmonious egalitarianism to the PSL table thus far. No team that's played two matches has won or lost both yet. Lahore's win means both they and Karachi have one win from two matches each.