Quetta Gladiators reign supreme to keep Karachi Kings winless in PSL8

Photo: PSL

It seems like a scripted tie in a movie, when a hero comes and save the day. Similar events took place in match six of the Pakistan Super League season eight (PSL8) at the National Bank Cricket Arena, when Martin Guptill single handedly rescued Quetta Gladiators and bowlers took them to a victory against hosts Karachi Kings.

The Saturday’s game was major morale booster for under pressure Guptill, who enjoyed batting under light, smashing 12 boundaries and five maximums for his maiden ton.

This too came when the Gladiators were in desperate need, as they were slumped to 4-23 in 6.1 overs. First, the veteran New Zealand batter made a 69-runs stand with Iftikhar Ahmed for the fifth wicket.

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The duo bought Gladiators back into the game. The hit seven boundaries to take the side to 92 in 16th over. At that stage Mohammad Amir removed Ifthikar, who scored 32 with the help of three boundaries.

The real onslaught from Guptill bat came in final five overs, where Gladiators scored over 70 runs and over 50 of them came in the last three overs of the innings.

Andrew Tye’s 19th over was the game changer, when Guptill smashed him for 30, three maximums and three boundaries. In the same over he completed his ton, his first in the tournament. His 117-run of 67 ball help Quetta reach 168/6 in their 20 overs.

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In replay, veteran Shoaib Malik scored a stunning unbeaten half-century – his second of the tournament – as Karachi Kings reached 162/5 in their 20 overs.

They came so close but yet too far, as this was their lost in a row.

Malik remained unbeaten on 71 of 49. He struck eight boundaries and a maximum. He was well supported by Irfan Khan, who scored 36 not out.

Mohammad Nawaz provided Gladiators their first breakthrough in the shape of Shajeel Khan’s (0) wicket. Then young Qais Ahmed bowled Haider Ali (0).

James Vince got the start, as he stuck five boundaries for his 22. He was undone by a stunning delivery from Naseem Shah.

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Matthew Wade played a hand of 15 runs before raw pacer from Mohammad Hasnain went through his defense.

Over all, it was an entertaining contest for the decent crowed, who supported both franchises. Karachi will now host defending champions Lahore Qalandars on Sunday while Quetta will play against arch-rival Peshawar Zalmi on Monday.

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