Quetta Gladiators beat Lahore Qalandars by 8 runs. Here is the full commentary and scorecard.
The Qalandars were not really in the control of when they were batting but in the bowling they made the Gladiators feel the pump in the bowling innings. Lahore combined their collapse with poor shot selection and slow running to gift the victory to last year’s finalists and the Gladiators bagging the 2 points.
However, the Qalandars had a strong start in the shape of two quickfire 20s from Brendom McCullum and Jason Roy as they took the attack to Zulfiqar Babar right from the word go but then Zulfiqar got his revenge by sending both of them to the pavilion. Although these to wickets had fallen the Qalandars’ score was still at 49 in 4.3 overs but the spin duo of Mohammed Nawaz and Hasan Khan wrapped around the middle order of the heart of Pakistan, bowling wicket to wicket with the Lahori making the mistakes. They made a lot of mistakes with 9 wickets falling for 79 runs.
Earlier in the day, the Gladiators did not have the best start either as their innings did not take off until the 13th over. When they fell in a hole of 65 for 5 in the 13th over, the Qalandars’ bowlers applied pressure but then came the debutante to the rescue. Rilee Rossouw’s late hitting of 60 steered the ship to a total that could have been chased down, 136. Then in the bowling department we saw same old Dubai where the spinners did the work to clean the Qalandars up as well as their will to get out.
Surprisingly, Rossouw struggled at the start of his innings just like most of his other teammates but he waited until the right moment to explode where as the others just gave their wicket away cheaply. After his below average start of 16 off 24 balls, then put the foot down with 6 overs to go by taking it to Grant Elliot (who was playing against his ex-team). 60 runs came off the last 5 overs and the Gladiators needed every run of it otherwise it would a very different result.
The left hand bowlers stole the show once again at Dubai with Mohammed Nawaz taking 2 for 19 off his 4 overs and Hasan Khan taking 2 for 10 in his 2.4 overs which included a man of the match award for him as well as the “Rising Star” trophy. The captain, Sarfaraz Ahmed, kept Zulfiqar on even after he was punished but then he ended up taking the both the destructive openers. However, the Qalandars’ shot selection was a major part of their downfall.
With openers setting a good platform at 49 for 2, Umar Akmal came in and showed why he can be so mad sometimes. A slower wide ball was delivered to Akmal on his first ball and he tried to launch it over mid-off but picked out Thisara Perera in the deep. The highest run scorer of HBL PSL I, started his HBL PSL II with a duck. From there, the Gladiators were always in control.
The Gladiators have joined United at the top of the table where as the Qalandars have lost their 7th consecutive match meeting the Zalmi at the bottom of the table. The Gladiaotrs continuing their destructive form in all departments of the game.
The Cornered Tiger