Lahore Qalandars defeated Peshawar Zalmi by five wickets in the PSL 2020 Eliminator match at Karachi to book their place in Qualifier 2 on Sunday, where they will face Multan Sultans. The winner will meet Karachi Kings in the final.
Set a target of 171 after having invited Peshwar to bat first, Lahore were dealt massive early blows by Saqib Mahmood, who had dangerous openers Fakhar Zaman and Tamim Iqbal caught behind the wicket for 6 and 18, respectively. He then added another big scalp in the form of opposition skipper Sohail Akhtar who perished for 7. At 33 for 3, Lahore looked in all sorts of trouble. However, a terrific fifty from veteran Mohammad Hafeez brought the chasing team right back into the contest.
Swift 20s from Ben Dunk and Samit Patel gave Hafeez much-needed support at the other end. However, when Rahat Ali dismissed Patel, caught off a pull with four overs to go, Peshawar’s hopes were raised.
Hafeez, however, smashed Mahmood for two fours and a six in the 18th over to swing the match back in Lahore’s favor. David Wiese then slammed back-to-back sixes off Wahab Riaz to seal victory for Lahore with an entire over to spare.
While Hafeez remained unbeaten on a brilliant 74 from only 46 balls, Wiese contributed 16 not out from only seven deliveries. For Peshawar, Mahmood was impressive at the top with his three wickets but was expensive towards the end. He finished with figures of 3 for 41. Rahat Ali was economical with 1 for 24, but Riaz disappointed, going wicketless while conceding 37 in his four.
Malik, Viljoen cameos lift Peshawar to 170 in Eliminator against Lahore
Sent into bat after losing the toss, Peshawar Zalmi recovered extremely well after Haider Ali was back in the hut second ball of the innings. They posted a competitive 170 for nine in their 20 overs.
Haider Ali was cleaned up by a yorker from Shaheen Shah Afridi that completely beat him. Peshawar kept losing wickets at regular intervals as Sohaib Maqsood (16) and Imam-ul-Haq (24) failed to convert starts.
Faf du Plessis held the innings together with his 25-ball 31. However, the experienced Shoaib Malik lifted the team with a cracking 39 from 24 balls. Hardus Viljoen put the finishing touches on the innings with a blazing 37 from 16 balls, hitting three sixes.
For Lahore, Afridi was most impressive with 2 for 19 while Dilbar Hussain claimed 3 for 33, running through the middle order. Haris Rauf and Wiese also picked up two wickets each, but were on the expensive side.
PSL 2020 Eliminator PZ vs LQ, who was the man of the match?
Dilbar Hussain was excellent for Lahore with the ball, dismissing three key batsmen in the middle-order. Shaheen Afridi was also brilliant with the ball, giving away only 19 in his four overs while picking up two scalps.
However, Hafeez was deservedly named the man of the match. He came into bat under extreme pressure, and saw his team slip to 33 for 3. Using all his experience, Hafeez played a mature knock and absorbed all the pressure. It was a high quality innings considering the occasion, and the circumstances under which it came.Published 15 Nov 2020, 12:02 IST