Islamabad United finished the league stage on a winning note after beating Multan Sultans by four wickets in match number 30 of the sixth edition of the Pakistan Super League at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
Multan had given Islamabad a 150-run goal after facing a batting collapse in the first inning.
Multan’s Shahnawaz Dahani gave his team a breakthrough early in the innings after he eliminated Islamabad starter Muhammad Akhlaq in the fifth over.
Dahani, who then went bowling in the seventh over, knocked out the other starter, Umar Amin, to put United down two.
Muhammad Umar then eliminated Islamabad captain Shadab Khan in the 13th over. But the captain had done enough damage to put United in command.
Asif Ali and Hussain Talat, who were on the fold, further reduced Islamabad’s deficit and sided with full command at the end of the 15th.
However, there was a twist in the story at 16, when Usman Qadir fired Asif Ali with Islamabad only needing 16 runs from 24 balls.
Qadir also knocked out Brandon King at 18 to put Islamabad down five and give Multan some hope.
Qadir’s takeover meant Islamabad required 8 of the last 12 balls.
Rizwan then went to his bowler ace Dahani. The pacemaker made sure his team didn’t go down without a fight and brought the game to the last end of the match.
In the last final, Islamabad needed 4 races and was able to get those big races.
Blessing Muzarabani took set hitter Hussain Talat’s window off the second ball of the last over to put United down six.
However, the Zimbabwean had very little to defend and Iftikhar Ahmed completed the victory for Islamabad after he took a run from the penultimate ball of the match a stretch away.
With the race, Islamabad defeated Multan by four wickets and finished the PSL league stage as table toppers.
For Multan, Dahani and Qadir ended up with two windows, while Muzarabani and Umar each took one window.
Multan Sultans Tickets
Previously, Islamabad eliminated Multan in 149 runs due to the excellent performance of their pitchers in the last 10 overs of innings.
For Multan, starters Shan Masood and Mohammad Rizwan gave the team a brilliant start.
Masood completed his half century after dispatching Shadab Khan for a six in the ninth.
However, Iftikhar Ahmed fired him for 59 in the next round of innings. He was also the top scorer for his team’s runs.
Until the end of the 11th, it looked like Multan would be sailing to a grand total against Islamabad.
But Fawad Ahmed threw a double wicket in 12th place to eliminate Rizwan and Sohaib Maqsood. In the next over, Shadab eliminated Rilee Rossow to put Multan down four.
The loss of the three fast terrains tipped the game back in Islamabad’s favor.
After the loss, Hammad Azam and Johnson Charles developed a good partnership to side with him until the end of the 20 overs.
But Islamabad bowlers played spoilers in their plans.
Faheem Ashraf fired Azam with a catch and pitch from the last ball of the 17-over, while Mohammad Wasim knocked Charles off the first ball of the 18-over.
The layoffs exposed Multan’s tail and left them six down with only two overs remaining on their innings.
Multan collapsed further when Faheem eliminated Usman Qadir in the penultimate change.
In the last over of innings, Islamabad’s Wasim took the last three wickets from Multan to restrict Multan to 149.
For Islamabad, Wasim finished with four wickets, Faheem and Fawad two each, and Shadab and Iftikhar closed with one wicket per piece.
Before the start of the match, Islamabad chose to play first against Multan.
Multan Sultans: Mohammad Rizwan (C and wk), Shan Masood, Sohaib Maqsood, Johnson Charles, Rilee Roussouw, Hammad Azam, Usman Qadir, Sohail Khan, Mohammad Umar, Blessing Muzarabani, Shahnawaz Dahani
Islamabad United: Umar Amin, Brandon King, M Akhlaq (week), Shadab Khan (c), Hussain Talat, Iftikhar Ahmed, Asif Ali, Faheem Ashraf, Wasim Jnr, Ali Khan, Fawad Ahmed