The Karachi Kings have won the Pakistan Super League in a perfect tribute to late coach Dean Jones.
Australian cricket legend Jones died in September after suffering a heart attack while in Mumbai commentating on the Indian Premier League.
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The 59-year-old’s death shocked the cricket world and was felt particularly hard in Pakistan, where Jones was the coach of the Kings in the PSL.
Jones had coached in all five seasons of the T20 competition, winning two titles with Islamabad United before taking over as Karachi coach this year.
However he never got to coach his new team, who went on to win the tournament on Tuesday.
When the competition resumed over the weekend, players former a ‘D’ formation on the field and posed with a cardboard cutout of Jones.
The big screen also displayed the message: “Forever in our hearts, Deano!”
— ICC (@ICC) November 14, 2020
“It’s tragic & so sad that Dean Jones isn’t there to witness it but their triumph is a fitting tribute to their coach,” Cricket writer Freddie Wilde tweeted of Karachi’s victory on Tuesday.
Karachi captain Imad Wasim paid tribute to the team’s late mentor.
“I want to give Dean Jones credit for this win. He taught us things about cricket that very few coaches can teach you,” he said.
“This win is for Dean Jones, (owner) Salman Iqbal and (interim coach) Wasim Akram.”
Akram, a legend of Pakistan cricket, also paid tribute to Jones in a post-game speech.
“We dedicate this win to Dean Jones, our coach and of course wishes to his family back in Melbourne,” he said.
Karachi’s official Twitter wrote: “Deano this one is for you!!!”
While cricket writer Israr Ahmed Hashmi tweeted: “Karachi was surely the better team on the field today. Glad that they have dedicated this win to Dean Jones.”
Congrats @KarachiKingsARY - deserving PSL champions. Throughout the season their top order & key bowlers were consistently excellent. It's tragic & so sad that Dean Jones isn't there to witness it but their triumph is a fitting tribute to their coach. #HBLPSLV
— Freddie Wilde (@fwildecricket) November 17, 2020
Alhumdulilah !!!! This is for you #Karachi . This is for you #DeanJones . Psl V champions ! @KarachiKingsARY , thank you to my team , my coach @wasimakramlive my skipper @simadwasim . pic.twitter.com/KpzqsoSxmk
— Salman Iqbal ARY (@Salman_ARY) November 17, 2020
— ESPNcricinfo (@ESPNcricinfo) November 17, 2020
A special victory for Karachi Kings, which coach Wasim Akram dedicated to the late Dean Jones 🌟 pic.twitter.com/RM5LIZdbfL
— ICC (@ICC) November 17, 2020
— Ali (@Bhuut_) November 17, 2020
Congratulations to the champions @KarachiKingsARY @wasimakramlive @simadwasim @babarazam258 @Salman_ARY and most of all to the champion up in the skies Dean Jones.... #HBLPSLV #HBLPSL pic.twitter.com/03EjirlksD
— Fakhr-e-Alam (@falamb3) November 17, 2020
Babar Azam leads Karachi to PSL title
An unbeaten half-century by Babar Azam anchored Karachi to their maiden Pakistan Super League title after beating Lahore Qalandars by five wickets.
Azam’s 63 not out off 49 balls propelled Karachi to 135-5 with eight balls to spare.
Lahore had earlier misread the slow pitch and laboured to 134-7.
Azam finished the tournament, which resumed on Saturday after being suspended for eight months by the pandemic, as the leading run-scorer with 473.
He gauged the pitch in the final to perfection, hitting seven boundaries.
“I just needed to remain cool," Azam said.
“The team was depending on me and I needed not to panic. I feel the calmer you are, the better you perform.
“I just knew I had to be there at the finish, and in the end we chased it with ease.”
Azam raised his half-century with back to back boundaries against Pakistan’s premier pace bowler, Shaheen Afridi, and captain Imad Wasim hit the winning runs, a boundary through the covers against the left-arm fast bowler in the penultimate over.
Chadwick Walton, who made 22, combined with Azam for 61 from 50 balls for the third wicket.
with Associated Press
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