Pakistan Super League
Ton-up Kamran Akmal powers Zalmi to victory over Gladiators
Statesman Report
KARACHI: Peshawar Zalmi opening batsman Kamran Akmal smashed the first century of the (PSL) 2020 to put his team in the driving seat of the match against the Quetta Gladiators on Saturday.
Akmal smashed his third century of the PSL and the first in the fifth edition of the league from just 54 balls.
He was dismissed on the very next ball, attempting to sweep Jason Roy for a six but was caught by Fawad near the boundary line.
Akmal’s three hundreds is a PSL record as no other batsman could make more than one hundred. This was the sixth hundred in the PSL history. Only three other batsmen hit tons earlier.
Akmal also holds the records of making the most runs and hitting the most sixes in the history of PSL.
Akmal was looking determined to complete the run-chase right from the beginning as he reached his quick-fire 50 from just 20 balls, hitting boundaries left, right and center. His opening partner, Tom Banton, was not as impressive, departing the crease scoring just 3 runs off 6 balls.
Earlier, Wahab Riaz was the pick of the bowlers for Peshawar Zalmi, taking two wickets for 21.
Riaz sent Shane Watson packing in the fourth over of the game. He was followed by Ahmed Shehzad, who returned to the pavilion after scoring just 12 runs courtesy of Mohammad Amir Khan.
Skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed was the third to depart after being bowled out by his Zalmi counterpart Darren Sammy for 41 runs.
Riaz then bowled out last match’s hero Azam Khan for just nine runs, with Mohammad Nawaz falling victim to Rahat Ali for two runs.
For the Gladiators, Jason Roy and Sarfaraz were the standout batsmen having scored 73* and 41 respectively.
Zalmi had made one change to the squad, bringing in Mohammad Mohsin in place of Mohammad Amir Khan.
For Quetta Gladiators, Tymal Mills came in place of Ben Cutting and Ahsan Ali for Abdul Nasir.
“It looks like a good wicket for batting,” Gladiators captain Sarfaraz Ahmed had said after they were invited to bat first. “We have a good combination and will try to put up a good score.
The Gladiators came into this match having kicked off their Pakistan Super League (PSL) 5 campaign with a win, defeating two-time winners Islamabad United by three wickets in the opening match of the tournament.
On the other hand, Zalmi came close to bagging two points against Karachi Kings but failed, thanks to quick fifties by Babar Azam and captain Imad Wasim.
Playing XI
Peshawar Zalmi: Kamran Akmal, Tom Banton, Haider Ali, Shoaib Malik, LS Livingstone, Darren Sammy (captain), Liam Dawson, Wahab Riaz, Hasan Ali, Rahat Ali, Mohammad Amir Khan
Quetta Gladiators: Jason Roy, Ahmed Shehzad, Shane Watson, Ahsan Ali, Sarfaraz Ahmed (captain), Azam Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Sohail Khan, Mohammad Hasnain, Fawad Ahmed, Tymal Mills.