Peshawar Zalmi qualified to play Pakistan Super League-4 final against Quetta Gladiators with a thumping 48 runs win against defending champion Islamabad United in the second eliminator of the tournament on Sunday.
The Sammy team triumphed United in all parts of the game. As in response to the mammoth 215 run-target, the United were restricted to 166 runs.
In the first innings of the game opener Kamran Akmal slammed down the United bowling attack with an inspiring 74 off 43, from 10 boundaries and three sixes, he was well assisted by Imamul Haq with his 58 off 33.
Imam-ul-Haq is among the four leading scorers in the PSL’s fourth edition with 338 runs in 11 innings, none of his peers having scored more runs than him this season.
When he was first picked to represent Pakistan, critics termed him as a “parchi” — referred by someone influential to gain an advantage over others — but Imam-ul-Haq proved his critics wrong with a sensibly outstanding performance.
Interestingly, however, none of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) teams had initially picked Imam either but the opportunity knocked on his door when Peshawar Zalmi tapped him as their 21st player.
Before PSL’s latest season started, many believed that Imam was not a player for shorter format. Yet, the 23-year old had vowed to prove himself as equally good in the shortest format when he spoke to Geo News prior to the start of the league.
In the last match of Pakistan Super League (Qualifier 2), when Imam was fielding a group of fans started calling him “Parchi, Parchi.”
Imam come up with a brilliant response as he started asking them to cheer it more loudly and in the he clapped and trolled all of them badly.
While speaking with Geo.tv he said that, “He understands the feelings of his critics well, which is why he feels that he has to prove every time he walks into the field.”
“It is natural that one has to prove in every format, but I have to prove myself every time I go to bat,” he said.
The young batter said he knows his ability and believes in working hard; however, whether he gets picked or not is not in his hands.
Imam said he was grateful to the Zalmi management for placing their confidence in his abilities that helped him express himself better and assertively.
“I am thankful to Zalmi’s management who showed confidence in my ability and allowed me to express myself, which empowered me to give my best,” he said.
In the 11 games he has appeared in for Peshawar, Imam scored four half-centuries but the one he scored Friday night against Islamabad United was his favourite of all time as it came to a knock-out stage that helped his side reach the PSL final.