HBL Pakistan Super League: Sultans’ juggernaut rolls on as Zalmi put to the sword

Published February 11, 2022
Multan Sultans’ Shahnawaz Dahani (R) holds on to a catch despite a collision with the onrushing Mohammad Rizwan to complete the dismissal of Peshawar Zalmi opener Kamran Akmal during their HBL Pakistan Super League match at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday.—Online
Multan Sultans’ Shahnawaz Dahani (R) holds on to a catch despite a collision with the onrushing Mohammad Rizwan to complete the dismissal of Peshawar Zalmi opener Kamran Akmal during their HBL Pakistan Super League match at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday.—Online

LAHORE: Needing a victory to reignite their faltering campaign, Peshawar Zalmi were never in the chase.

Multan Sultans’ Zimba­bwean pacer Blessing Muzarabani had them on the ropes by the end of the second over, sending back both openers in the space of five deliveries in their HBL Pakistan Super League match at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday.

The target of 183 at that point looked like a mountain to scale. The scale of their task got even bigger when star batter Liam Livingstone was sen trudging back by Abbas Afridi on the final ball of the powerplay, leaving Zalmi at a deflating 42-3.

In the end, they were bundled out for 140.

Zalmi have now lost four out of their six fixtures. Even the shift to Lahore from Karachi hasn’t helped.

The change of venue or city hasn’t hampered Multan Sultans in any way. The defending champions’ winning juggernaut continues. It’s now six wins in six and a spot in the playoffs is within touching distance.

Thursday’s victory never seemed in doubt after Muzarabani’s first over although the first dismissal would’ve had the Sultans coaching staff fearing for the well-being of captain Mohammad Rizwan.

Muzarabani had induced a leading edge from Kamran Akmal and as Rizwan raced from behind the wicket to catch it, he collided with Shahnawaz Dahani, who held onto it.

Kamran was soon joined by fellow opener Haider Ali in the dugout — the latter chopping on Muzarabani onto his own stumps.

Livingstone revived Zalmi hopes when he smashed six and four fours in his quickfire 24 but just when it seemed he was settling into a partnership with Shoaib Malik, he feathered Abbas to Rizwan.

Hussain Talat soon followed, caught by Anwar Ali at mid-wicket off Dahani.

Malik and Sherfane Rutherford (21) combined for 40 runs to keep Zalmi afloat before the West Indies hard-hitter, having hit a six and two fours, was deceived by Muzarabani’s slower ball and could only sky it to Tim David.

Malik was Zalmi’s last hope and when he was dismissed by Imran Tahir for a 31-ball 44 featuring four fours and two sixes, it was all but over for Zalmi.

With wickets tumbling around him, Ben Cutting (23) hit a couple of sixes but by that time it was too late for Zalmi as Khushdil Shah picked up the last three to fall, including a stunning caught and bowled off the last man Salman Irshad.

Multan could’ve posted more runs had it not been for a collapse late down the order which saw four wickets fall in the final two overs.

The collapse started halfway through the 18th over, with the Sultans at 161-2 after a solid opening stand between Shan Masood (68) and Mohammad Rizwan (34), when Rilee Rossouw (15) found Ben Cutting at long-on off Salman Irshad while looking for a third six of his innings.

The next over by Zalmi captain Wahab Riaz saw Sultans dangerman Tim David (34) depart when he chased a wide delivery outside off but could only find Saqib Mahmood before Anwar Ali was run out off the final ball of the over.

Saqib gave away just seven runs in the final over in which he accounted for Khushdil and Abbas.

Wahab had earlier broken Sultans’ 98-run opening stand when he trapped Rizwan lbw.

Rizwan, who was dropped by Saqib off Malik earlier in his run-a-ball innings, reviewed the decision but found no reprieve.

It was Shan who was the aggressor in their partnership which saw the Sultans score 46 in the first five overs. In the third over, he smashed Saqib for two boundaries before betting that with three consecutive boundaries in the next over by Mohammad Umar and getting another two in the fifth by Wahab.

Shan completed his third half-century this season off 34 deliveries and with David striking the ball with his usual ferocity, hitting three fours and two sixes in his innings, the Sultans were on the charge.

Having hit Salman for a six on the first delivery of the 16th over, Shan went for another big hit but gave Wahab a simple catch at long-off. He had nevertheless laid the platform for a total close to 200. Sultans couldn’t get there but their 182 proved more than enough for Zalmi.

Scoreboard

MULTAN SULTANS:

Batsmen & mode of dismissals R B 4s 6s SR

Shan Masood c Wahab b Salman 68 49 8 1 138.77

Mohammad Rizwan lbw b Wahab 34 34 2 0 100.00

Tim David c Saqib b Wahab 34 18 2 3 188.88

Rilee Rossouw c Cutting b Salman 15 7 0 2 214.28

Khushdil Shah b Saqib 11 7 2 0 157.14

Anwar Ali run out (Rutherford/Kamran) 1 1 0 0 100.00

Sohaib Maqsood not out 1 1 0 0 100.00

Abbas Afridi c Malik b Saqib 5 4 1 0 125.00

EXTRAS (LB-7, NB-1, W-5) 13

TOTAL (for seven wickets, 20 overs) 182

FALL OF WICKETS: 1-98 (Rizwan), 2-131 (Shan), 3-161 (Rossouw), 4-169 (David), 5-175 (Anwar), 6-175 (Khushdil), 7-182 (Abbas).

DID NOT BAT: Imran Tahir, Blessing Muzarabani, Shahnawaz Dahani

BOWLING: Saqib 4-0-44-2 (2w), Umar 2-0-20-0, Wahab 4-0-34-2 (1w, 1nb), Salman 4-0-34-2, Livingstone 4-0-34-0, Malik 2-0-9-0

PESHAWAR ZALMI:

Batsmen & mode of dismissals R B 4s 6s SR

Kamran Akmal c Shahnawaz b Muzarabani 4 7 0 0 57.14

Haider Ali b Muzarabani 1 5 0 0 20.00

Liam Livingstone c Rizwan b Abbas 24 16 4 1 150.00

Shoaib Malik c Shan b Tahir 44 31 4 2 141.93

Hussain Talat c Anwar b Shahnawaz 4 6 0 0 66.66S

Herfane Rutherford c David b Muzarabani 21 19 2 1 110.52

Ben Cutting c David b Khushdil 23 11 1 2 209.09

Wahab Riaz c Anwar b Khushdil 1 5 0 0 20.00

Mohammad Umar c Rizwan b Shahnawaz 0 2 0 0 0.00

Saqib Mahmood not out 11 11 0 1 100.00

Salman Irshad c&b Khushdil 2 3 0 0 66.66

EXTRAS (LB-2, W-3) 5

TOTAL (all out, 19.3 overs) 140

FALL OF WICKETS: 1-5 (Kamran), 2-5 (Haider), 3-42 (Livingstone), 4-51 (Hussain), 5-91 (Rutherford), 6-102 (Malik), 7-109 (Wahab), 8-109 (Umar), 9-128 (Cutting).

BOWLING: Anwar 2-0-11-0, Muzarabani 4-0-18-3 (1w), Shahnawaz 3-0-35-2, Abbas 3-0-23-1, Tahir 4-0-25-1 (1w), Khushdil 3-0-26-3 (1w).

RESULT: Multan Sultans won by 140 runs

UMPIRES: Richard Illingworth (England) and Ahsan Raza (Pakistan)

TV UMPIRE: Shozab Raza (Pakistan)

MATCH REFEREE: Ali Naqvi (Pakistan)

Published in Dawn, February 11th, 2022

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