Malik leads Zalmi to victory against Gladiators in PSL's 18th game
Peshawar Zalmi's Shoaib Malik celebrates after scoring half century against Quetta Gladiators the Pindi Cricket Stadium in Rawalpindi. AFP
Peshawar Zalmi beat Quetta Gladiators by 30 runs in the 18th match of the fifth edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) in Rawalpindi on Thursday.
Quetta Gladiators captain Sarfaraz Ahmad won the toss and elected to bowl first, but his bowlers failed to take advantage of the moisture on the pitch.
Peshawar Zalmi piled up a big total of 170 runs in 15 overs after rain forced the officials to cut the match short. Zalmi’s Shoaib Malik made 54 runs off 27 balls and newcomer Haider Ali scored 39 runs off 24 balls. Malik was given man of the match award.
Gladiators’ Muhammad Hussain took four wickets and conceded 34 runs in three overs.
In reply, Gladiators could score only 140 runs for the loss of seven wickets. Jason Roy scored 45 runs and Shane Watson hit 19 runs. On the bowling side, Zalmi's Wahab Riaz and Rahat Ali took three and two wickets, respectively.
Batting first earlier, a stormy innings by Malik and youngster Haider helped Peshawar Zalmi to post a big total of 170-6 in a rain-hit 15-over-a-side match.
Gladiators brought back Tymal Mills and Sohail Khan back into the fold considering the pace friendly conditions but nothing worked. Zalmi entered the field under new captain Wahab Riaz who has replaced Darren Sammy. Sammy has been elevated to the position of head coach-cum-player, while Zalmi’s head coach Muhammad Akram has been made director (cricket). Zalmi went into the match with only three foreign players instead of the allotted four and included Imam-ul-Haq to play his first match in this edition. However, Imam’s comeback was cut short by Sohail Khan, as the batsman was caught behind by Sarfaraz when he edged a short of length delivery by the pacer. He could score just seven runs off as many balls and hit only a singer boundary.
Zalmi’s mainstay Kamran Akmal took a quick and good start, but failed to stay yet again. He hit two consecutive sixes to Mohammad Hasnain and mishit high in the air to the onside and was caught by Jason Roy at mid-on. He scored 23 runs off 12 balls and hit two sixes and as many boundaries. Haider, who added 30 runs to the total for second wicket with Kamran, continued to impress with his solid and brisk batting and played his shots beautifully in a pivotal 54-run stand with Malik for the fourth wicket. He scored 39 runs off 24 balls and hit four boundaries and two sixes in the process. He became the second wicket of Hasnain as once again a leading edge went very high in the air to the moon and back down.
Watson, moving from backward point to point, had to wait for ages before it came down. He moved here and there and then finally stretched forward and took a well-judged catch. Malik continued to attack Quetta Galdiators and raced to his 50 off 25 balls, hitting seven boundaries and a six. Liam Livingstone became the third victim of tournament’s leading wicket-taker Hasnain when another leading edge flew in the air to short third man and Sohail took the catch. He scored 12 runs off 7 balls, hitting two boundaries.
In the same over, Malik added another boundary to his tally, but completely missed the next delivery of Hasnain when he made room and went to play a big shot high in the air and his off stump went cart wheeling. He finished his innings on 54 off 27 deliveries with a strike rate of 200. Ben Cutting cut short Liam Dawson’s stay as he miscued a wider slow delivery high in the air and Roy took the rest at long off. Dawson went for a duck. However, Gregory and Hasan Ali kept their feet on gas paddle and each hit a six to Cutting in the penultimate over of the innings. Gregory hit another six to Mills in the last over as Zalmi finished their innings on 170-6. Gregory remained unbeaten at 19 off 9 balls with the help of two sixes and Hasan Ali at 9 off 5 balls with a six. Hasnain was the most successful Gladiators bowler in terms of wickets as he took four wickets after conceding 34 runs in three overs.
Most economical bowler was Nasim Shah who gave just six runs in two overs. Sohail went for 1-38 in his three overs and Mills 0-33. Cutting took one wicket in his two overs and conceded 30 runs and M Nawaz remained wicketless after conceding 26 runs in two overs.
Peshawar Zalmi: LA Dawson, Kamran Akmal, Haider Ali, Shoaib Malik, LS Livingstone, L Gregory, Imam-ul-Haq, Wahab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Yasir Shah, Rahat Ali
Quetta Gladiators: JJ Roy, SR Watson, Ahmed Shehzad, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Azam Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, BCJ Cutting, Sohail Khan, TS Mills, Naseem Shah, Mohammad Hasnain.