Haider Ali’s enterprising 49 and Kamran Akmal’s attacking 41 not enough as Zalmi fall short in 200 chase
Lahore Qalandars 199 for 4 (Fakhar 66, Shafique 41, Irshad 2-47) beat Peshawar Zalmi 170 for 9 (Haider 49, Akmal 41, Zaman 3-32) by 29 runs
After Shaheen Afridi bowled Hazratullah Zazai off the third ball of the 200 chase with no run on the board, Akmal and Hussain Talat added 62 as Akmal went for the boundaries while Talat struggled to get going. But Zaman Khan got them both off back-to-back balls in the ninth over, first having Talat caught at deep midwicket before getting Akmal to chop on to his stumps.
Akmal’s 41 came off 24 deliveries, including 4, 4 and 6 off successive balls in the fifth over against Rashid Khan, while Talat couldn’t make the most of three drops to limp to 15 from 24 deliveries.
But after Akmal fell, Haider ensured Zalmi didn’t lose the momentum, getting off to a rapid start after himself being dropped. With Mailk also gone and the required run rate up to nearly 15 with seven overs remaining, Rutherford also targeted Rashid, cracking 6, 4 and 4 off consecutive deliveries. However, Zaman Khan dismissed Rutherford for 21 from 11 balls, and despite Haider’s effort, Zalmi were left with too much to do in the end, as David Wiese nearly had a hat-trick for Qalandars with DRS reversing the umpire’s initial out verdict.
And with the bat, Qalandars were set up by an aggressive 94-run opening stand between Fakhar Zaman and Abdullah Shafique. Initially, Fakhar Zaman was the one who went after the bowlers, scoring 26 off his first 13 balls after four overs. Shafique then upped the tempo, slamming Arish Ali for 6 and 4 off the first two balls of the next over. At least one boundary was hit every over until Usman Qadir got Shafique for 41 off the last ball of the ninth to break the partnership.
But Fakhar Zaman pumped Qadir for two more boundaries – the ball drooping off Haider’s fingers at deep square leg facilitated the six – before Talat got him for 66 in the 13th over. That is when Mohammad Hafeez, Kamran Ghulam and Rashid combined to provide the finishing touches to Qalandars’ innings, as they crashed 82 off the final seven overs, with Rashid hitting three sixes in an unbeaten eight-ball 22.