GeneralPSL 9: Multan Sultans Preview

PSL 9: Multan Sultans Preview


There have been a lot of changes at Multan Sultans since the last edition of the PSL. The franchise is now in the hands of a new-look management team. And (for the most part) has a new-look batting order. Andy Flower, who is unavailable as he juggles his roles in various other leagues, has been replaced by Abdul Rehman, who was formerly assistant coach – and Mohammad Wasim has taken up the assistant coach role. Nathan Leamon has been hired as the Head of Strategy. Mohammad Rizwan has been retained as captain, but former captain Shan Masood has moved on to Karachi Kings. Multan play their first 5 games at home before embarking on their travels; they will play only 1 match in Lahore and 2 in Rawalpindi this season.



  • Mohammad Rizwan
  • Iftikhar Ahmed
  • Khushdil Shah
  • Usama Mir
  • Abbas Afridi
  • Tayyab Tahir
  • Shahnawaz Dahani
  • Mohammad Ali


  • David Willey
  • Dawid Malan
  • Reeza Hendricks
  • Usman Khan
  • Chris Jordan
  • Johnson Charles
  • Olly Stone


  • Faisal Akram
  • Yasir Khan
  • Aftab Ibrahim
  • Muhammad Shahzad


Multan have a new-look top order, with the departures of Shan Masood (now captain of Karachi Kings) and Rilee Rossouw (preferred a return to Quetta Gladiators). They have drafted a host of top-order options to support Mohammad Rizwan, including Reeza Hendricks, Dawid Malan, Johnson Charles, Yasir Khan, Usman Khan, and Muhammad Shahzad. Tayyab Tahir may also fill in at the top if needed.

In the middle order, they have also had to make changes, with David Miller and Tim David not available for the PSL this year, while Kieron Pollard went to the draft and subsequently also ended up at Karachi Kings. Iftikhar Ahmed, in the Platinum category, was their most prominent recruit for the middle order, where he will partner Khushdil Shah, while Tayyab Tahir, Johnson Charles, and Usman Khan could also play in the 4-5 roles.

For fast bowling, Multan have lost the services of last year’s Player of the Tournament, Ihsanullah, who has failed to recover from injury in time for PSL 9. With their first draft pick, they opted for David Willey. Abbas Afridi will be an important pace-bowling option after his exploits last season. Shahnawaz Dahani, who missed out on almost the whole season last year due to injury, is fit and firing. Other recruits include death specialist Chris Jordan and Test bowler Mohammad Ali. Late recruit Olly Stone adds some pace to the attack. Aftab Ibrahim is the emerging option for pace.

Multan have retained the services of leggie Usama Mir to lead their spin-bowling attack this season. They also obtained Faisal Akram in a trade with Karachi Kings to provide a left-arm wrist spin option, while Iftikhar Ahmed and Khushdil Shah will handle finger-spin duties.


With their picks at the draft, Multan have ensured that they have reliability and consistency, if not explosiveness, in their top order in the form of Hendricks and Malan, who are likely to be the first-choice options to bat in the top 3, along with Rizwan.

Multan also have good variety in bowling with left-arm and right-arm pace options, including specialists for the powerplay (Willey), middle (Dahani), and death (Jordan). However, the losses of Topley (no NOC due to a niggle) and Ihsanullah, both confirmed just a few days before the start of the tournament, will sting. But the late addition of Stone gives another dimension to their attack in the form of a high-pace option. In spin, they also have all bases covered in terms of variety, with one option for each type of left and right-arm finger and wrist spin.

The squad composition means that Multan have plenty of backup options and alternatives for each role, meaning they can potentially juggle around a few options until they find the right combination. Usama, Yasir, and Charles all offer something different at the top to Hendricks and Malan, while Charles, Tayyab, and Usman can all bat in the middle order, too. The same applies to their bowling attack.


Multan’s batting lineup runs the risk of being too conservative with the likes of Rizwan, Hendricks, and Malan in the top 3 and Iftikhar and Khushdil in the middle order. The top 3 are anchor-style batsmen and don’t have a strong track record of attacking spin in the middle overs, while the Pakistani middle-order duo also tends to look to take the innings deep and launch at the death.

Last season, Multan struggled with their bowling economy, particularly when it came to death bowling, going at almost 12 RPO at the death (15 RPO in Pindi). The recruitment of Jordan means they do now have an option with death-bowling experience, but it remains to be seen as to who will be able to share death-bowling duties. Abbas and Dahani have both struggled in that role in prior seasons. Youngster Aftab bowled at the death in the National T20 with reasonable success.

Team Composition

Possible Starting XI

  • Mohammad Rizwan 🧢🧤
  • Reeza Hendricks ✈️
  • Dawid Malan ✈️
  • Tayyab Tahir
  • Iftikhar Ahmed
  • Khushdil Shah
  • David Willey ✈️
  • Chris Jordan ✈️
  • Abbas Afridi
  • Usama Mir
  • Aftab Ibrahim 🧒🏽

Multan’s first-choice playing XI is likely to include two overseas players in the top 3 and another two in the pace-bowling attack. However, they may be without some of their overseas picks at the start of the tournament, depending on the final stages of the ILT20 and BPL. Their backup options mean they can field several combinations. They could also opt for Yasir Khan at the top, freeing up an overseas slot to use elsewhere in the lineup and simultaneously removing the need for an emerging bowler. If the Sultans struggle with the conservative nature of their batting lineup, they could also change it up by utilizing the more powerful Charles and Usman.

Finding a balanced XI may be somewhat of a concern, although almost all of Multan’s bowlers offer batting utility. Willey at Number 7 is a gamble; most of his T20 success with the bat has come while batting in the top 3 in England. Outside the top 4 in all T20s, he averages just 15.8 at a strike rate of 117. To lengthen the batting, Multan could consider playing emerging pace all-rounder Muhammad Shahzad and have him share overs with Iftikhar/Khushdil for the 5th bowler. Alternatively, Iftikhar & Khushdil could combine for the 5th bowler’s overs on a track where spin plays a major role. But it’s likely that Multan and Rizwan would like to play 5 front-line bowlers on most traditional Pakistani tracks.

With the ball, Multan have several possible combinations. Abbas and Usama are likely to be nailed-on starters after they combined for 40 wickets last season. Dahani or Mohammad Ali can come into the mix as well, depending on the number of foreign bowlers they opt for or if they choose an emerging batsman rather than a bowler. Multan will hope one of their local bowlers comes good at the death in partnership with Jordan, making their team composition easier to stabilize.

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