Babar Azam on Friday played a gem of an innings to give Karachi Kings their first points on board as they beat Islamabad United by eight runs on the DLS method in Sharjah.
Karachi opted to bowl first in the rain-affected match and restricted Islamabad to 90-8 in 13 overs.
In their chase, Babar smashed 47 off 30 balls to give his team the much-needed lead on the DLS method.
Over 9.4: KHI 75-4 (Target: 95)
Karachi are eight runs ahead and have been declared winners as umpires think the match cannot take place under the conditions: first points on board for the Kings. Islamabad United are disappointed but they’ll take it.
Single followed by three runs. Another single by Imad. Babar on strike… take a single, however, players are asked to leave the field due to rain – yes you heard that right for the upteenth time today, rain!
Over 9: KHI 69-4 (Target: 95)
Nine runs off the over. Karachi need 26 off 24 now.
FOUR! On his legs and Babar glances it towards square leg. The fine leg fielder loses the chase.
Shane Watson now.
Over 8: KHI 60-4 (Target: 95)
Only four off the over.
Saeed Ajmal on now.
Over 7: KHI 56-4 (Target: 95)
RUN OUT! Ravi Bopara is unable to reach the crease in time. Babar Azam stands strong as partners come and go. Imad Wasim joins him now.
FOUR leg byes off Bopara.
Over 6: KHI 50-3 (Target: 95)
OUT! Shoaib Malik goes for the big hit but mishits it to point. Ravi Bopara join Babar in the middle.
Imran Khalid on now.
Over 5: KHI 46-2 (Target: 95)
SIX! Bludgeoned over the head of long-on by Babar Azam.
FOUR! Babar Azam dealing in boundaries to guide Karachi home.
Shadab Khan, right-arm spinner now.
Over 4: KHI 32-2 (Target: 95)
FOUR! Babar is the man today for Karachi. Length ball, on his legs, he places it towards unguarded midwicket.
Spin time! Imran Khan the left-arm spinner bowls.
Over 3: KHI 24-2 (Target: 95)
The equation still favouring Karachi if they can hold on to their nerves – 71 off 10 overs.
STRIKES FIRST BALL! Danger man Sanga is bowled. Shoaib Malik joins Babar Azam.
Over 2: KHI 20-1 (Target: 95)
FOUR! This time finds the gap through covers. Stylish, composed and what not – Babar Azam for you everyone.
SIX! Moves to his right and slaps it towards square leg. Babar Azam is boasting his class here.
FOUR! Over extra cover goes Babar Azam.
Mohammad Sami now.
Over 1: KHI 2-1 (Target: 95)
Only two runs and a wicket off the over.
OUT! Chris Gayle swings blindly and he is gone for 2 off 3 balls. Plan B people! Babar Azam joins Kumar Sangakkara in the middle.
Chris Gayle is ready, towering Mohammad Irfan is ready, are you?
Can Gayle finish this game early today? Will defending champions consolidate their position further by topping the table? Can Karachi get their first points on the table? Too many questions to find answers to, only if the rain stay away!
Over 13: ISL 90-8
RUN OUT! Another attempt to complete two runs.
CAUGHT BEHIND! It’s walk in and walk out at the moment for Islamabad batsmen. Asif Ali departs. Mohammad Sami is joined by Shadab Khan.
RUN OUT! Another one falls short of the crease. Imran Khalid quickly jogs back to the pavillion.
FOUR! Edge, flies high and quick past Sanga. Asif Ali accounts for the boundary.
RUN OUT! Watson tries to take the strike back with a double but he is well short.
Usman Khan bowls the last over.
Over 12: ISL 81-4
SIXx2! Shane Watson send two into the crowd – even they are unable to hold on to it. Pure power hitting from Watto!
Amir on for the penultimate over.
Over 11: ISL 64-4
FOUR! Watson smacks it to midwicket.
OUT! The young gun dismisses the experienced Pakistan Test captain. Babar Azam at long on takes the catch.
Usama Mir, the leggie.
Over 10: ISL 58-3
Seven runs off Amir’s over courtesy a boundary.
Over 9: ISL 51-3
OUT! Top-edge and Sanga places himself nicely under the catch to bag it to safety. Smith walks. Shane Watson joins Misbah.
Over 8: ISL 48-2
SIXx2! Smith hits first, Misbah follows second.
The match starts again.
Bowls the first ball. Smith complains of the drizzle and the umpires have called on covers.
Kashif Bhatti again!
Over 7: ISL 34-2
Only two off the over. Good effort!
Usama Mir now.
Over 6: ISL 32-2
DROPPED! Smith tries again but mistimes it to Usman Khan at deep cover. He goes with an inverted cup and spills it.
SIX! Welcomed by Smith with a ‘on the roof top’ giant.
Kashif Bhatti, left-arm spinner.
Over 5: ISL 22-2
Eight runs off the over.
SIX! Smith takes the aerial route and clears cow corner.
Imad Wasim again.
Over 4: ISL 14-2
Only four runs off the over.
Left-arm pacer Usman Khan bowls as Misbahul Haq joins Dwayne Smith in the middle.
Over 3: ISL 10-2
CAUGHT AND BOWL! Imad Wasim once again proving his credentials with the new ball. Haddin takes the long walk back.
Over 2: ISL 8-1
Only three runs off the over.
Mohammad Amir shares the new ball with Imad.
Over 1: ISL 5-1
FOUR! Brad Haddin goes down on one knee and sweeps it towards midwicket.
OUT! Sam Billings, hero Islamabad’s last match, is dismissed LBW.
Imad Wasim has the ball.
Finally we have the toss: Karachi win and opt to bowl first.
More showers again and the covers are back on. No toss still.
Toss to take place at 2115 PST
Here is what the twitterati thinks about who will win today’s match