PSL 2019: Kamran Akmal sends Peshawar top in final league game against Karachi

Waseem Ahmed 22:02 11/03/2019
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Kamran Akmal hit a blazing 86 in Karachi. Image: PSL/Twitter.

It was a clash Karachi Kings had to win by a handsome margin to harbour any hopes of finishing in the top two of PSL 2019 table and make it to the first Qualifier. However, it was Peshawar Zalmi who emerged comprehensive victors by 61 runs in the final league game of the season.

Opener Kamran Akmal blasted 86 from just 48 balls – with 10 fours and five sixes – to help Peshawar post 203-7 in their 20 overs in Karachi on Monday. Fellow opener Imam-ul-Haq had kept the innings together with a composed 59 from 40 balls as Peshawar sped to 137 for the opening wicket inside 14 overs.

The pitch at the National Stadium has been especially flat and with a super fast outfield and extremely short boundaries, Karachi were expected to give it a good go. However, the entire top order crumbled under the scoreboard pressure as Karachi were shot out for 142 in 16.2 overs at their home ground.

Peshawar pacers were on the money from the word go with Hasan Ali removing the dangerous Colin Munro lbw for nought although replays suggested the ball was heading down the leg side.

Babar Azam was caught driving while left-arm quick Tymal Mills had in-form Liam Livingstone caught at mid-on off a slower ball bouncer.

But Karachi didn’t throw in the towel. Middle order dasher Colin Ingram kept the asking rate within reach by blasting 71.

But wickets kept falling and Ingram too departed after hitting four sixes and seven fours during his 37-ball knock. The next highest scorer was captain Imad Wasim. Hasan ended up with 3-15 while Mills and Wahab Riaz picked up two wickets each. Captain Imad (30) was one of only three batsmen to reach three figures, showing how much they had been outplayed.

Peshawar thus moved to the top of the points table, followed by Quetta Gladiators, Islamabad United and Karachi. Peshawar will face Quetta in the Qualifier while the winner from the Eliminator between Islamabad and Karachi will face the loser of the first Qualifier for a spot in the final.

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