Islamabad United leapfrogged Peshawar Zalmi into second place in the Pakistan Super League table on Saturday night thanks to a nail-biting final ball win over Zalmi in Sharjah.
The incredible finish was set up after Shane Watson (30) was run-out coming back for a second run off the penultimate ball of the match which would have handed Islamabad victory.
Substitute fielder Chris Jordan completed the run-out, the England bowler on the field for the majority of the innings without any suggestions of injury, his fielding prowess an obvious advantage and his presence dubious.
It left Amad Butt needing to find one run off the final ball and Peshawar looking to take the game to a Super Over.
He didn’t disappoint, driving the ball down to mid-off for four and sparking wild scenes of celebration.
At the other end was Dwayne Smith, whose 72 not out provided the Islamabad backbone in a game where neither side were able to reach top gear.
Put into bat first, Peshawar’s innings was slow progress with Eoin Morgan (28) the pick of the top six batsmen until he succumbed to impressive leg-spinner Shadab Khan, with Peshawar 78-6 and a substantial total looking beyond them.
But captain Darren Sammy (20) led the fightback alongside the man most in the crowd came to see, Shahid Afridi.
The pair put on 31 in 17 balls to give their side hope and register what was eventually a competitive total.
Misbah-ul-Haq’s side were left needing 137 runs for victory, a target dwarfed by the 200-3 that Lahore Qalandars failed to defend on the same fantastic looking wicket in the first match of the day.
Islamabad weren’t about to make life easy for themselves, however, with 40-year-old Rafatullah Mohmand promoted to open in place of Islamabad’s star man so far, Sam Billings.
Rafatullah came and went for 11, as did Brad Haddin (2) before Billings reunited with usual opening partner Dwayne Smith with the score 15-2.
Billings struggled for rhythm further down the order, mustering 11 from 15 balls before being bowled by Wahab. Misbah also perished soon after with five from 12.
Tasked with leading their team’s resistance, Smith was joined at the crease by Watson with 63 still required from the final seven overs, the pair eventually instigating Islamabad’s victory.
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