Sharjah, 21 February, 2019: Former champions Peshawar Zalmi upstaged a sloppy Karachi Kings by 44 runs to maintain their second spot in the HBL Pakistan Super League, riding on a maiden PSL half century from opener Imam-ul-Haq and Hasan Ali’s four wickets in Sharjah on Thursday.
Imam-ul-Haq top-scored for Peshawar in their 153-8 after 20 overs with a 43-ball 56 with five boundaries and a six while Liam Dawson made 33-ball 43 with a six and four boundaries after they were sent into bat by Karachi Kings captain Imad Wasim.
Hasan’s 4-15 in four overs, three wickets in the 19th over, wrecked Karachi to 109-9 in 20 overs.
Peshawar’s spearhead Hasan once again got a wicket off the very first ball, like he did against Islamabad United with Luke Ronchi’s scalp, as he dismissed Liam Livingstone first ball, trapping him leg before with a sharp incoming delivery.
Karachi were then rocked by two runs outs, most notably when their star performer Babar Zaman was smartly run out by Hasan Ali who, after being turned down for a leg-before appeal, caught Babar by surprise with an athletic piece of fielding. Babar managed just one.
That pushed Karachi to 13-2 which became 15-3 when the new arrival Ben Dunk was caught behind for 12.
Colin Ingram struck three boundaries before another calamity struck. Ingram was run out by a smart piece of fielding by Imam as he failed to regain crease off a sharp single. Ingram made 14-ball 21.
Zimbabwean Sikander Raza made 26-ball 14 as the asking run-rate mounted above ten. Raza in an attempt to push the rate, was bowled by Umaid Asif.
Karachi were 80-5 after 15 overs and needed a big 74 runs in the last five overs, which proved beyond their reach. Imad (27-ball 26 with one boundary) and Mohammad Rizwan (27-ball 32 not out with two boundaries) added 49 for the sixth wicket but lack of boundaries hurt Karachi badly. Karachi batsmen failed to hit a single six.
Hasan returned for his second spell to remove Imad, Aamer Yamin and Mohammad Amir in his last over to seal the match.
The win kept Peshawar on the second spot with four points in three games, close on the heels of Quetta Gladiators who are top with three wins and six points. Multan Sultans, Islamabad United and Karachi are third, fourth and fifth while Lahore Qalandars are sixth and last, separated by net run-rate.
It was Imam who anchored the innings after fellow opener Kamran Akmal was bowled by Yamin — one of two changes in Karachi side — for a duck in the second over. Imam added an invaluable 75 runs for the fourth wicket with Dawson after Peshawar were struggling at 49-4.
It was Kamran’s 24th duck as he joins brother Umar as the batsman with second most ducks in all Twenty20s. West Indian Dwayne Smith leads the chart of most ducks in Twenty20 cricket.
Both Sikander’s wickets were grabbed by part-timer Sikander Raza who finished with 2-23 in his four overs. Raza had Umar Amin for 15 and Danny Madsen for a third-ball duck in a double-wicket maiden.
Imad Wasim bowled Kieron Pollard for nought to push Peshawar on the back foot before Imam and Dawson steadied the innings.
Peshawar captain Darren Sammy used the long handle to the best effect, smashing three boundaries and a six in his ten-ball 24 not out, scoring 17 in the last over bowled by Yamin.
Usman Shinwari also finished with 2-36 while Mohammad Amir took 1-22.
Friday will be a double header day as Multan faces Lahore while Islamabad meet Peshawar.
Peshawar Zalmi beat Karachi Kings by 44 runs
Peshawar Zalmi 153-8 in 20 overs (Imam-ul-Haq 56, L. Dawson 43)
Karachi Kings 109-9 (Mohammad Rizwan 32 not out; Hasan Ali 4-15)