Lahore: Defending champions Multan Sultans beat Lahore Qalandars by 28 runs in the qualifier of the Twenty20 Pakistan Super League in Lahore on Wednesday, clinching a spot in the final.
Sultans, who won the title in Abu Dhabi last year, rode a fiery 42-ball 65 not out by Rilee Rossouw and a steady undefeated 51-ball 53 by skipper Mohammad Rizwan to post 163-2 in their 20 overs.
Rizwan and Rossouw played cautiously against off-spinner Mohammad Hafeez (1-16), who didn’t concede a boundary, before both compiled 53 runs against fast bowlers in the last five overs to set up a challenging total for Lahore.
Rizwan hit only three boundaries in his seventh half-century this season but kept the scoreboard ticking with his brilliant running between the wickets with Rossouw, who smashed seven fours and a six.
For Qalandars, opener Fakhar Zaman knocked a 45-ball 63 studded with four sixes and two fours but no other batsman could supplement him as they managed 135-9.
A packed 30,000 Gaddafi stadium - mostly supporting the local Lahore team - was enthralled by Rossouw, who hit seven fours and a six.
Fast bowler Shahnawaz Dahani finished with 3-19 for Sultans.
Sultans had won nine of their 10 first-round matches in the six-team league.
Islamabad beat Zalmi in eliminator
Twice champions Islamabad United, who beat Peshawar Zalmi by five wickets in the eliminator on Thursday, will play Qalandars on Friday to decide who meets Sultan in Sunday’s final.
Opener Alex Hales cracked 49-ball 62 with three sixes and six boundaries to help United overhaul a 170-run target at Gaddafi stadium.
Peshawar, who won the PSL title in 2017, had managed 169-5 after winning the toss and electing to bat, with veteran former Pakistan player Kamran Akmal scoring 39-ball 58.
With Islamabad needing 10 off the last over, Liam Dawson hit a six and four to complete the chase in 19.3 overs.
Karachi Kings and Quetta Gladiators bowed out in the first round.