ISLAMABAD: Former pacer Shoaib Akhtar on Friday lauded middle-order batsman Azam Khan for his superb innings for Quetta Gladiators against Islamabad United in the opener of the 2020 HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL) saying the Karachi-born youngster has proved his worth in the team.Defending Champions Quetta Gladiators outplayed two time winners Islamabad United by three wickets at National Stadium Karachi. Azam Khan was the highest scorer for Gladiators as he scored 59 runs off 33 balls including five 4s and three 6s. “There has been a lot of criticism on Azam because of his father and coach of Gladiators Moin Khan.But through his performance Azam has proved that he deserved a place in the team. There must have been a lot of pressure on Moin but I congratulate him for Azam’s performance,” he said on his YouTube channel. The Rawalpindi Express also hailed Mohammad Hasnain and Ben Cutting’s bowling that restricted two-time champions Islamabad United to a total of 168 runs for all in 19.1 overs Hasnain who was named Player of the Match bagged 4 wickets for 25 runs while Ben Cutting grabbed 3 wickets for 31.Shoaib also praised the opening ceremony of PSL saying this was the first time that the full-fledged league was happening in the country and we all must support the mega tournament. He also lauded United’s skipper Shadab Khan saying he would do better as the tournament proceeds.Former skipper Rameez Raja also hailed Azam for his superb performance and said Azam provided a good 63-run partnership with Gladiator’s skipper Sarfraz Ahmed. “Azam has a very strong temperament and his contribution has been very good for the team,” he said.