Amidst the ruins, Shahid Afridi dragged his side over the line single-handedly, as Peshawar romped to victory with four balls to spare against Quetta Gladiators at the Dubai Internation Stadium on Sunday(February 26).
Chasing a modest 129 for victory, Peshawar made it tough for themselves as wickets fell regularly during what should have been a straightforward run chase. Peshawar started off needing to go at just a shade over 6 an over. But some channel bowling by Gladiators and extra purchase out of the surface for spin bowlers never allowed Zalmi to breathe free at any stage.
Afridi came in when his side was in tatters, 6-53 in 9.3 overs. He first forged a 37-run union with the experienced Mohammad Hafeez(22), and later combined for a 24-run stand with Wahab Riaz to seal the win for his side.
Afridi struck 3 fours and as many sixes in his blazing 23-ball 45. Kamran Akmal(26) also played a vital role in holding the innings together for Zalmi so long as he was at the crease.
Earlier, Quetta had managed a below-par 128 in their 20 overs, mainly due to the contributions from Kevin Pietersen(41) and Rile Rossouw(38), both forged a key 88-run stand to put Quetta back on track after having lost both their openers in the second over. However, things in the middle were largely tough for Quetta as they could only manage 128.
Mohammad Asghar was the pick of the bowlers for Peshawar, as he claimed figures of 3-33 and also Man of the Match award.
With this win, Peshawar has now knocked off Quetta from the top spot in the point table. Though, both teams have already made it to the playoffs.
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