Sharjah: Kevin Pietersen sparkled with a breezy knock of 48 runs off 38 balls with three sixes and four boundaries to steer Quetta Gladiators to an impressive six wicket win over Islamabad United in the ninth match of the Pakistan Super League at the Sharjah Cricket Stadium on Wednesday night.

Quetta won the toss and elected to field. Opener Chadwick Walton fell in the third over, trapped leg before by Anwar Ali for 8. Asif Ali, who joined Luke Ronchi, lasted only seven balls to score six runs before being bowled by a delivery that hit the top of off stump.

Ronchi and J.P. Duminy took the score to 66 in 8.2 overs when left-arm spinner Hasan Khan clean bowled Ronchi for 43. Skipper Misbah Ul Haq, playing his first match after injury, joined Duminy but John Hasting removed Duminy for 14, caught at long on by Mohammad Nawaz. Shane Watson ended Misbah’s innings in the 17th over by having him caught at deep midwicket by Mohammad Mahmudullah for 22. Faheen Ashraf hit 21 runs but got run out and Islamabad posted 134 for 7 in 20 overs.

Chasing the total, Shane Watson fell in the fourth over to Steven Finn as he lobbed to Rumman Raees at mid-on for 13. Next man Umar Amin lasted five balls to score six runs before he inside edged Mohammad Sami on to his stumps. Opener Asad Shafiq too fell for 22 as he tried to flick a Finn’s delivery, missed it and found his middle stump pushed back. Three down for 48 in six overs, Kevin Pietersen and Mohammad Nawaz hit sixes off Faheem Ashraf in the 11th over to take 18 runs off the over. Pietersen went on to play the match winning knock and bag the man of the match while Nawaz remained unbeaten on 25. Quetta won with 17 balls to spare.

Brief scores

Quetta Gladiators bt Islamabad United by six wickets. Islamabad 134 for 7 in 20 overs (Luke Ronchi 43, Misbah Ul Haq 22, Faheem Ashraf 21) Quetta 135 for 5 in 17.1 overs (Asad Shafiq 22, Kevin Pietersen 48, Mohammad Nawaz 25n.o, Steven Finn 3 for 35)