Quetta Gladiators thrashed Karachi Kings by 23 runs in match 28 of the Pakistan Super League at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore Sunday.
Openers Joe Clarke and Babar Azam gave their team a flying start and shared an 87-run partnership. Skipper Babar Azam scored 36 runs off 34 deliver-ies with three fours and one six but medium-fast bowler Khurram Shahzad dismissed him.
Clarke smashed 50 off 34 balls and was bowled by Muhammad Irfan for 52. Shahzad took his sec-ond wicket in the 13th over when he sent aggressive Sharjeel Khan back to the pavilion. Khan added 16 runs to the scoreboard off just seven deliveries with one four and two sixes. Qasim Akram contributed just nine runs in the team’s total.
Rohail Nazir went back to the pavilion after scoring 8 runs, Imad Wasim was dismissed for 11, while Lewis Gregory could only add 1 run to the scoreboard. On the other hand, Tom Lammonby was bowled for a duck by Shahzad.
Shahzad proved to be the most lethal bowler of the match as he bagged four wickets. Naseem Shah grabbed two wickets, while Muhammad Irfan and Ashar Qureshi took one wicket each.
Earlier, Quetta Gladiators set 167-run target for Karachi Kings in the match. Gladiators’ skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed won the toss and opted to bat first against Kings. Opener Will Smeed could not deliver in the match and lost his wicket after making just 10 runs off 11 deliveries. Kings pacer Usman Khan Shinwari drew first blood for his team.
After Smeed’s dismissal Jason Roy and James Vince shared over a 60-run partnership. James Vince added 29 runs to the scoreboard off 24 balls with three fours and one six before being dismissed. Umar Akmal went to the pavilion after making just two runs.
It was Iftikhar Ahmed and Roy’s partnership at the backend of the innings helped Quetta set a 167-run target for Kings.
Englishman Jason Roy remained the top scorer for Gladiators with 82 runs off 64 deliveries with 11 bounders. In its innings, Gladiators made 166 runs at the loss of four wickets.
While, Kings’ Imad Wasim, Mir Hamza, Usman Khan Shinwari and Lewis Gregory took one wicket each.
It is pertinent to mention here that Gladiators had 6 points from nine games and the new victory have put them at the level of Islamabad United, who have 8 points from eight games, in the points table.
However, merely a win won’t be enough for the Gladiators as they’re too below on the Net Run Rate (NRR), which is -0.917 as compared to Islamabad, who bear an NNR of +0.101.—APP