Darren Sammy-led Peshawar Zalmi on Friday beat Karachi Kings by 24 runs in Dubai to set Pakistan Super League (PSL) final against Quetta Gladiators.
The final is scheduled to take place in Lahore on Sunday at the picturesque Gaddafi Stadium.
Karachi, led by Kumar Sangakkara, opted to bowl first after winning the toss and courtesy man-of-the-match Kamran Akmal’s 104 off 65 balls (six boundaries and seven maximums), Peshawar were able to set a daunting 182-run target for the Kings.
“Credit goes to fast-bowlers; all of them bowled well,” said Kamran in the post-match presentation ceremony. “I started the tournament nicely but lost my way in the middle but the management gave me confidence and I delivered today.”
Sohail Khan and Mohammad Amir were the only successful bowlers for Karachi with one wicket each.
In their chase, Karachi lost their way when they were five wickets down for just 80 runs in the 12th over. With too many runs needed of too many balls, Keiron Pollard struck 47 off just 26 balls to show some fight for the Kings but once he departed the flare of hope died out too.
“We didn’t start well in the first six overs [while bowling],” said Sanga. “We didn’t have any partnerships to start off with [while batting]. I was very proud to captain these great guys. All of them who played for Karachi should be proud of what they have achieved. I had two great seasons in this league.”
He also wished PSL luck for the final in Lahore: “The final is going to take place in Pakistan now; I hope the crowd enjoys the final in Lahore.”
Meanwhile, Sammy said that the Peshawar players’ decision to participate in the Lahore final depends on the team boss Javed Afridi.
“We held our nerves well today,” said Sammy. “Wahab [Riaz], [Chris] Jordan and Hasan [Ali] bowled well. I’ve never been to Lahore. [Are you looking forward to it?] It all depends on what the boss [Javed Afridi] says.
I salute the crowd: Sethi
PSL chairman, who was present at the post-match presentation ceremony, said they are ready to stage the final in Lahore and thanked the crowd for their utmost support in UAE.
“It’s been an extraordinary experience,” said Sethi. “Competitive games were played. The camaraderie you saw, the team spirit you saw. The happy atmosphere you saw, I think it’s wonderful.”
He continued: “We are prepared for the Lahore final. Meanwhile, I would like to salute these Pakistanis in the stadium. This tournament wouldn’t have been possible without you.
He then told the crowd to chant with him: “Chalo chalo, Lahore chalo (let’s go to Lahore).”
Over 20: KAR 157-7 (target 182)
So, Sohail Khan has hit it in the air and it’s dropped at midwicket but it doesn’t matter. Peshawar are in the final against Quetta on March 5, in Lahore.
Last ball… there is an infiltrator on the pitch. The guy wants a selfie with Sammy.
Dot to Sohail. Single follows. Dot to Amir. Wide. Another wide! Single.
Single by Amir. 30 off 5 now. Sohail Khan needs to hit five sixes.
Sammy to bowl the winning over.
Over 19: KAR 151-7 (target 182)
FOUR! Over short extra cover’s head by Amir.
Single by Mohammad Amir who join Sohail Khan. Another one.
OUT! Imad Wasim caught at point by Hafeez. 38 off 10 needed.
Jordan now. Sohail Khan takes a single – 38 off 11 needed.
Over 18: KAR 143-6 (target 182)
Sohail Khan join Imad. 40 off 13 needed.
OUT! Slow and wide on off, Pollard swings wildly, edges it to Kamran Akmal. Peshawar can breath now! It’s nearly them versus Quetta in the Lahore final.
FOUR! Towards square leg. 40 off 14 now. Pollard has two more to face.
Wahab. Single to start the over. Two dots to Pollard now. Match has nearly gone out of Karachi’s hand.
Over 17: KAR 137-5 (target 182)
Imad faces the last ball… one more. Karachi need one big, big over now – 45 off 18.
Pollard faces with two deliveries in hand… only one from it.
Dot to start, wide to cover for it. Single brings Pollard on strike. He tries to get a biggie but only a single is earned. Imad takes one more but Karachi need a boundary.
Hasan Ali in for his last over. This over can make or break for it both team.
Over 16: KAR 131-5 (target 182)
FOUR! Wide and Imad slashes hard at it. The point fielder jumps but it goes over him and kisses the ropes.
Wahab Riaz. Starts with a dot. Two singles follow.
Over 15: KAR 124-5 (target 182)
SIX! Imad Wasim sends it flat over long-off. Karachi are making a match out of this after being nearly out of it till the 10th over.
Over 14: KAR 111-5 (target 182)
Last ball, Pollard against Jordan… nothing from it too.
Two singles and an over-head wide now. Pollard faces with two balls remaining… it’s a dot.
FOUR! Wide, wide delivery, Pollard goes hard with a one-handed slap and it beats deep cover fielder.
SIX! Pollard raises it high in the air, so high that no one knows where it’s going to land, andddd it lands inside the rope.
Over 13: KAR 98-5 (target 182)
SIX! That is high, that is gigantic, a mammoth of a shot, straight into the crowd – it’s 98metres, the second biggest of the tournament1. That’s hit Poll-hard!
Double and two singles.
SIX! Into the crowd from Pollard. That was dead straight. Pressure on bowler from the first ball.
Over 12: KAR 80-5 (target 182)
BOWLED! Same delivery but this time it lights up the bails. Gayle walks after scoring 40 off 31 balls. Pollard is the only man who can now salvage a win for Karachi. He is joined by Imad Wasim.
FOUR! Inside edge, Gayle thinks he is bowled, but the ball kissed the leg-stump and ran towards the boundary.
Over 11: KAR 74-4 (target 182)
SIX! Gayle goes over log on. Full and a little leggish. Gayle put it into the crowd with utter ease.
FOUR! Pollard goes towards midwicket.
BLOOD in Dubai! Pollard slams it towards Afridi at short extra cover who just tries to put a hand to it but it slits his webbing between the index and middle finger. Afridi has left the field in urgency.
Over 10: KAR 59-4 (target 182)
SIXx2! The gush before the storm has arrived. Gayle slams two into the crowd.
FOUR! Gayle goes straight.
Over 9: KAR 39-4 (target 182)
FOUR! Pollard joins Gayle now. He knows what is required by Karachi at the moment. Hits a boundary on the first ball he faces.
STUMPED! Gayle loses another partner. Ravi Bopara tries to come forward but is beaten by Hafeez. Kamran Akmal does what he is supposed to then.
Over 8: KAR 34-3 (target 182)
SIX! Gayle hits over square leg. Wahab gets his hand to it but can’t stop it because of the power on it. Hundred marks to Wahab for the attempt though, he nearly slapped it out of the boundary ropes.
Shahid Afridi now.
Over 7: KAR 24-3 (target 182)
Only a single off the over.
Hafeez on now.
Over 6: KAR 23-3 (target 182)
Four runs and a wicket off it.
Ravi Bopara joins Gayle.
OUT! Hafeez takes a stunner at mid-on, flies to his left and takes it while taking a fall. Malik departs for a duck. Game and set at the moment for Peshawar. Dear Gayle, wake up please!
Over 5: KAR 19-2 (target 182)
Shoaib Malik joins Gayle.
OUT! Sanga (15 off 13) is caught, tries to go over covers again but cannot time it. Marlon Samuels cups an easy one.
FOUR! Sanga hits a shorter one through covers.
Wahab Riaz now with his pace.
Over 4: KAR 13-1 (target 182)
SIX! Sanga wait for Gayle to fire but then takes matters into his own hands. Lofts it over the long on boundary.
Mohammad Hafeez now to the left-handed Karachi duo.
Over 3: KAR 4-1 (target 182)
Only one run off it.
Over 2: KAR 3-1 (target 182)
Only two from it and a very important wicket. Karachi on back-foot at the moment. Will Gayle strike hard? Can Pollard take Karachi past the finish line? Too many questions but all will be answered soon!
OUT! Babar Azam top-edges an easy catch to Wahab Riaz at mid-off. He scored only one off seven balls. Kumar Sangakkara joins Gayle in the middle.
Chris Jordan now.
Over 1: KAR 1-0 (target 182)
Only a single off the over. Karachi don’t need the start they had against Islamabad. They started with two maidens. They need to buck up today and score quickly from the word go.
Chris Gayle and Babar Azam walk out to chase 182 for Karachi. Hasan Ali will bowl the first over for Peshawar.
Over 20: PZ 181-3
What a day for Kamran Akmal. He scores the first century of PSL2 and Peshawar Zalmi have posted a more-than-decent total for Karachi Kings. Karachi have the likes of Babar Azam, Sanga, Shoaib Malik, Gayle and Pollard to chase this easily but will they fire today? We will join you in just a few minutes with Karachi’s chase. Stay tuned!
Single to end the innings.
OUT! Afridi caught at long-off without troubling anyone.
FOUR! Samuels adds four more to the total.
Shahid Afridi join Marlon Samuels in the middle.
RUN OUT! Raise that bat to the crowd Kamran Akmal – 104 from 65 balls. He is congratulated by everyone on the field. Gayle says his felicitations but Kamran tell him ‘you are number one’. Great, humble yet electrifying innings from Kamran.
Mohammad Amir for the last over.
Over 19: PZ 173-1
Only five from the over.
Penultimate over. Usman Khan Shinwari to bowl it.
Over 18: PZ 168-1
FOUR! Quick delivery, Marlon swings at it, misses, Sanga dives to his left, misses and it obviously missed stumps too. Four byes!
CENTURY! FIRST OF PSL2! Kamran Akmal take a bow. What a knock. 100 off just 60 balls courtesy seven sixes and six boundaries.
Over 17: PZ 160-1
SIX! Why should Kamran have all the fun, asks Marlon. Over midwicket and a gigantic one too.
FOUR! Imad’s foot just touches the boundary while he is collecting the ball. Kamran moves to 98 from 58 balls. Takes a single to move to 99 now!
Over 16: PZ 145-1
SIX! Over midwicket this time. Kamran closing in on a century now – he is on 93 off 56 balls.
SIX! Short and on middle stump, Kamran makes room for himself and slams it over long off.
FOUR! Misfield by Imad Waism at midwicket. The disappointed reaction from team management says it all. Samuels accounts for it.
Over 15: PZ 126-1
Three from first three balls. Two dots follow. Last ball, Kamran faces… he goes across and whips it to the fine leg fielder. Only a single off it.
Usman Khan Shinwari.
Over 14: PZ 122-1
SIX! Full and Kamran Akmal goes bang over long on. He is on 77 from 48.
Ravi Bopara with his cutters now.
Over 13: PZ 110-1
SIX! Kamran Akmal has targeted the bad deliveries nicely today. Usama was throwing in shorter one, Kami danced forward and sent it screaming over extra cover.
100 up for Zalmi in 12.1 overs.
Over 12: PZ 99-1
OUT! Slow ball and Malan tries to clear long on with a one-handed shot. He is caught after scoring 36 off 31. Finally a breakthrough for Sanga. Can Karachi start tightening the noose now? Marlon Samuels joins Kamran Akmal.
Sohail Khan in for his third over.
Over 11: PZ 94-0
Six off the over but still now wicket.
Mohammad Amir is back to find a wicket for Sanga!
Over 10: PZ 88-0
FOUR and FIFTY! Kamran Akmal has performed better than anyone in this PSL for Peshawar Zalmi. Hits it with power towards midwicket, fielder slips and he gets 52 off 33. Great knock till now!
FOUR! Short and slow, Kamran picked the length early and dispatches it towards the on side. He moves to 48 now.
Ravi Bopara to try and break this partnership.
Over 9: PZ 77-0
SIX! Full-toss from Imad and Kamran slog sweeps it over cow corner.
Over 8: PZ 66-0
SIX! Full-toss and wide on off, Kamran sends it flat over covers. Kamran delivering just what the doctor ordered for Zalmi.
SIX! Two steps forward and Kamran sends the ball into the crowd. Babar Azam fetches it from long off.
Usama Mir with his leg-spin now.
Over 7: PZ 51-0
Only four runs off the over.
Over 6: PZ 47-0
SIX! Flicked off the legs by Malan. Superbly timed shot.
FOUR! Kamran goes past mid-off. Nearly misses his hand.
Usman Khan Shinwari.
Over 5: PZ 34-0
FOUR! Short and Malan pulls it over the in-field towards midwicket.
Kamran Akmal completes 4,000 runs in T20 cricket.
Sohail Khan again.
Over 4: PZ 27-0
Left-arm pacer Usman Khan Shinwari. Sangakkara not letting the PZ duo get set on a single bowler.
Over 3: PZ 23-0
FOUR! Malan charges to Sohail and goes uppish over covers. Hits the boundary on the bounce. Shoaib Malik signals it’s a boundary.
Two more dots follow and then a single.
Beat Kamran on first two balls; first by sheer pace and then by change it of: slower one.
Sohail Khan now, the highest wicket-taker in PSL2 as of now.
Over 2: PZ 18-0
FOUR! Cover dissected by Malan again. Imad not finding the right length at the moment.
FOUR! Driven through covers by Malan.
Imad Wasim with the new ball.
Over 1: PZ 10-0
FOUR! Edge and the ball runs past the first slip. Kamran again!
FOUR! Wide on off and Kamran finds the gap between Gully and third man.
Mohammad Amir will bowl the first over for Karachi. Kamran Akmal and Dawid Malan are going to open the innings for Peshawar.
Karachi Kings have won the toss and opted to bowl first against Peshawar Zalmi.