PSL 2019: Shan Masood unconcerned with Multan Sultans' slow start to Season 4
Multan have also lost two matches, most recently when they were resoundingly beaten by Quetta Gladiators
Shan Masood says his Multan Sultans side are unconcerned by their faltering start to the Pakistan Super League, and believes early setbacks will count for little when it comes to the business end of the tournament.
Multan will meet Lahore Qalandars in the first match of a Friday double-header at 3pm at Sharjah Cricket Stadium, with Islamabad United and Peshawar Zalmi set to feature in the 8pm fixture.
Multan and Lahore were the two lowest-placed finishers in the competition last season, and have each suffered a troubled start to this campaign, too.
Qalandars have lost two of their first three matches, as well as seeing their captain Mohammed Hafeez ruled out because of a thumb injury.
Multan have also lost two matches, most recently when they were resoundingly beaten by Quetta Gladiators in the first of this season’s matches to be played in Sharjah, on Wednesday night. Masood is unworried, though, by the initial exchanges.
“The early stages of the competition are more about getting the combinations right, and your players finding good touch,” Masood said.
“The crucial part of the tournament comes towards the end, and you want to gain momentum leading into the final few games to qualify, and then in the eliminators you want momentum in that.
“We are not too disappointed. It is good to have setbacks early on in the tournament because it gives you the opportunity to bounce back up and come back strong.”
Masood was once considered an opener best suited to long-format cricket, but he has been given his first chance in the PSL this season on the back of strong form in the 50-over game.
Although he has yet to make a score of note, Masood says he feels at ease in the PSL.
“In all three innings, they have been decent starts, but I failed to convert them,” Masood said.
“The aim is to convert them to give the team a stable platform for the first 10 overs. It is a bit frustrating not going on and making more runs.
“But I look forward to the next game, and the good thing about this PSL is the games come thick and fast and it gives you an opportunity to get back up quickly.”
Masood is not the only left-handed Pakistan opener who will be under the spotlight on Friday afternoon. Salman Butt could be set for a PSL bow for Lahore, after being drafted in as an injury replacement for Hafeez.
“It was unfortunate to lose Hafeez, and we believe that only an experienced Pakistani player like Salman Butt can replace him,” Aaqib Javed, the Lahore coach, said of the recruitment of former Pakistan captain Butt.
Updated: February 21, 2019 11:44 AM