Islamabad United’s Shane Watson was on fire as he hit successive boundaries to lead his team to victory over Peshawar Zalmi. The winning boundary of the match was hit by Sam Billings in the first match of the Pakistan Super League.
Under pressure, Zalmi gave away extras and pitched some terrible deliveries which were punished promptly by United’s batsmen.
Watson was supported on the crease by Dwayne Smith who made 55 off 49 balls. Smith was caught on a ball by Junaid Khan, but the duo had cemented United’s run rate.
United were 81 for the loss of one wicket at the end of the 10th over and were chasing a target of 191.
The teams had resumed play after briefly stopping due to heavy drizzle which had forced the ground staff to cover the pitch.
During play, United had steadied their innings after losing Sharjeel Khan at the start of the second over, and were 56 for the loss of one at the end of the 7th over in the opening match of the Pakistan Super League.
United, chasing a target of 191, made a ferocious start with hitting 14 off the first over. Openers Sharjeel Khan and Dwayne Smith built up the confidence of United.
Khan fell off a delivery by Hassan Ali and was declared leg before, he had a strike rate of 25.
Peshwar Zalmi made 190 runs at the end of their innings after getting off to a shaky start, with Akmal stabilising the innings with his blistering 88.
Zalmi lost three wickets in quick succession between the 15th and 17th over, and seemed to falter at 169 runs after Akmal’s departure.
Afridi made four runs off just as many balls, Sammy made seven off seven and Sohail made 12 runs off 14 balls.
Sammy came after Akmal but was caught on a wide delivery by Irfan. Afridi took to the crease after Sammy’s early departure.
Malan was finally caught on a ball by Watson at 38. English T20 captain joined Akmal on the crease after his departure.
Morgan was bowled on a tricky delivery by Ajmal, and he had to look back and confirm his bails were off.
Peshawar Zalmi reached the 150-run mark in 15 overs, helped by a blistering performance by Kamran Akmal who made 88 runs off 47 balls.
Zalmi had posted 100 run is less than 10 overs after losing a wicket on the first ball of the match. Hafeez was caught behind off a ball by Irfan.
Zalmi recovered quickly, with Kamran Akmal brutally smashing his way to 50 off 29 balls and was supported by Malan on the crease.
The start of the was match delayed, as the organisers had trouble removing the stage that was set up for the opening ceremony.
An iron pillar holding up the sidescreen was also causing issues.
Misbah ul Haq (capt), Mohammad Sami, Saeed Ajmal, Sharjeel Khan, Mohammad Irfan, Shane Watson, Brad Haddin, Sam Billings, Dwayne Smith, Imran Khalid, Amad Butt.
Darren Sammy (capt), Eoin Morgan, Chris Jordan, Shakib al Hasan, Dawid Malan, Shahid Afridi, Mohammad Hafeez, Kamran Akmal, Junaid Khan, Hasan Ali, Haris Sohail.