PSL 2019: Quetta Gladiators ride on Umar Akmal fifty to beat Peshawar Zalmi

Waseem Ahmed 15/02/2019
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Umar Akmal in action. Image credit - @thePSLt20/Twitter.

Umar Akmal upstaged his elder sibling Kamran to guide Quetta Gladiators to a comfortable six-wicket win in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) clash against Peshawar Zalmi at Dubai.

Umar struck an 75 (50) unbeaten containing three sixes and seven boundaries as Quetta chased down Peshawar’s total of 155-4 with two balls to spare.

Having been put into bat first, Kamran Akmal gave Peshawar get an excellent start despite Mohammad Irfan dismissing Andre Fletcher early into the innings.

Kamran’s 49-run (36) was brought to an end by Mohammad Nawaz who also dismissed Kieron Pollard for just three.

However, Misbah-ul-Haq shored up Peshawar’s innings once again in the company of Liam Dawson with the former Islamabad United skipper’s unbeaten 49 (32) helping his side post 155-4.

Hasan Ali then gave Zalmi a roaring start with the ball by dismissing Ahmed Shehzad for a golden duck off the very first delivery of the innings.

Shane Watson and Rilee Rossouw got starts but were unable to push on further before Umar Akmal and skipper Sarfraz Ahmed took control of Quetta’s innings.

Umar brought up his half-century off just 35 deliveries in a controlled innings mixed with equal parts aggression and sensible rotation of the strike.

Sarfraz’s 37-run knock was ended by the excellent Wahab Riaz who finished with figures of 2-18 and in the process became the first bowler to bring up 50 PSL wickets.

Umar, though, continued t march on and finished off the game in the last over with a delightful six off Pollard.

BRIEF SCORES

Peshawar Zalmi: 155-4 (20 overs)

Kamran Akmal: 49 (36)

Misbah-ul-Haq: 49 not out (32)

Quetta Gladiators: 161-4 (19.4 overs)

Kamran Akmal: 75 not out (50)

Wahab Riaz: 2-18 (four overs)

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PSL 2019 LIVE: Quetta Gladiators coast to six-wicket win over Peshawar Zalmi

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Umar Akmal in action. Image credit - @thePSLt20/Twitter.

The third match of the 2019 Pakistan Super League (PSL) sees Peshawar Zalmi square up against Quetta Gladiators at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

2017 champions Peshawar Zalmi are eyeing their second PSL title under the leadership of the West Indies all-rounder Darren Sammy. Led by Pakistan skipper Sarfraz Ahmed, Quetta are bidding to win their maiden PSL crown after falling at the last hurdle on two previous occasions.

Who will come out on top in the battle between Sammy and Sarfraz’s men? Follow the ball-by-ball action from Dubai below to find out.

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PSL 2019: Misbah-ul-Haq proves age is just a number in fine Peshawar Zalmi debut

Waseem Ahmed 15/02/2019
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Misbah has still got it. Image - @thePSLt20/Twitter.

Pakistan cricket fans were given a treat as Misbah-ul-Haq rolled back the clock once again in a stirring knock for Peshawar Zalmi against Quetta Gladiators at Dubai.

Having led Islamabad United to two Pakistan Super League titles, the veteran switched to Peshawar Zalmi for the fourth edition.

Prior to the tournament, there had been plenty of uncertainty over whether the former Pakistan skipper would extend his playing career for another season.

In the end, not only did Misbah sign on for another year, he started off his campaign with a brilliant unbeaten knock of 49 (32) on his Zalmi debut.

Here, we take a closer look at the 44-year-old’s innings against Quetta Gladiators.

STATISTICS

RUNS: 49

BALLS FACES: 32

BOUNDARIES: 4

SIXES: 2

STRIKE-RATE: 153.12

30-SECOND REPORT

Misbah arrived at the crease after the fall of Kamran Akmal’s wicket with Peshawar at 77-2. The veteran started in circumspect fashion but soon announced his intentions with a fine six off Fawad Ahmed.

Sohaib Maqsood and Kieron Pollard fell at the other end but Misbah continued to take the initiative for Peshawar into the death overs. He forged a 52-run unbeaten stand with Liam Dawson to help Zalmi cross the 150-run barrier and was unfortunate to miss out on a well-deserved fifty after being able to take only a single off the last delivery of the innings.

GOT RIGHT

The veteran paced his innings to perfection on a wicket where it was becoming difficult to score runs as the ball continued to get older. He brought out his trademark hoicks against the spinners over mid-wicket to good effect, striking two huge sixes and helping Peshawar accelerate towards the death with two vital boundaries in the penultimate over.

GOT WRONG

Not much to fault in Misbah’s innings given he was the only Zalmi batsman to convert his promising start into a substantial innings. The only complaint against him is that he could have stepped on the gas much earlier in his innings.

VERDICT – 8/10

Islamabad United’s loss is Peshawar Zalmi’s gain as Misbah continues to rock it well into his 40s. In a Peshawar squad littered with hard-hitting batsmen, the right-hander’s experience at anchoring the innings could be the perfect antidote for the franchise.

Plenty thought he was finished in this format when he was facing up to bowlers who were not even born when he made his first-class debut. But Misbah showed against Quetta that age is just a number.

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