Dubai: Peshawar Zalmi opener Kamran Akmal smashed a whirlwind century as his team inflicted a crushing six-wicket defeat on defending champions Quetta Gladiators on the third day of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) at the National Stadium in Karachi on Saturday.
Quetta, who were restricted to 148 for five, could not stop Akmal who went for his shots right away from the start and hit 101 runs off just 55 balls - studded with 13 boundaries and four sixes. So dominant was his batting that when Peshawar reached the 100-run mark in just nine overs, Akmal having scored 79 of those runs.
For Quetta, opener Jason Roy hit an unbeaten 73 off 57 balls with six boundaries and a six while skipper Sararaz Ahmad chipped in with 41 runs off 25 balls (five boundaries and a six).
Peshawar Zalmi won the toss but elected to field. In the fifth over, Quetta lost opener Shane Watson for eight when he miscued a pull off Wahab Riaz and landed up being caught at mid-on by Hasan Ali. Ahmad Shehzad and opener Jason Roy took the score to 50 in 7.5 overs when Mohammad Amir Khan forced Shehzad to top-edge to Tom Banton at short third man for 12.
Roy reached his 50 in 40 balls. Sarfaraz fell in trying to lift Darren Sammy to Banton at long on after adding 62 runs for the third wicket. Roy remained unbeaten but could not take the score beyond the 150-run mark.
Akmal put on 44 runs with opener Tom Banton, who scored only three before being caught behind off Tymal Mills. Akmal then put on 82 runs in 10 overs with Hyder Ali (25) for the second wicket. When Ali fell caught behind of Sohail Khan, Peshawar needed only 23 more runs in 40 balls. Akmal swept Fawad Ahmad to Roy at mid-wicket, soon after completing his century. Peshawar won with nine balls to spare.
Earlier On Friday night, Pakistan-born South African leg spinner Imran Tahir emerged as the hero of the Multan Sultan’s five wicket-win over Lahore Qalandars in the third match of the PSL at the Lahore Gaddafi Stadium on Friday night.
Tahir, who will turn 41 on March 27, bagged the Man of the Match for his tight spell along with another veteran hero Shahid Afridi - who will celebrate his 40th birthday on March 1. They together gave away just 45 runs between them in the eight overs and restricted Lahore to 138 for eight in 20 overs. Tahir went on to take two wickets for 21 runs too while Afridi gave away just 25 with no wicket from his four overs.
Chasing the easy target, Multan won with 23 balls to spare through captain Shan Masood’s 38 runs and Rilee Rossouw’s 32 runs and Afridi’s unbeaten 21.
Peshawar Zalmi bt Quetta Gladiators by 6 wkts. Quetta 148 for 5 in 20 overs (Jason Roy 73n.o, Sarfaraz Ahmad 41, Wahab Riaz 2 for 21) Peshawar 153 for 4 in 18.3 overs (Kamran Akmal 101, Haider Ali 25, Faward Ahmad 2 for 40 ) Man of the Match: Kamran Akmal.
Played on Friday: Multan Sultans bt Lahore Qalandars by 5 wkts. Lahore 138 for 8 (Chris Lynn 39, Imran Tahir 2 for 21, Sohail Akhtar 34n.o, Moeen Ali 2 for 12, Mohammad Illyas 2 for 16) Multan 142 for 5 in 16.1 overs (Shan Masood 38, Rilee Rossouw 32, Shahid Afridi 21n.o) Man of the Match: Imran Tahir.