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Karachi Kings vs Islamabad United, 2nd Qualifying Final, 20th Feb, 2016. 22nd Match, Pakistan Super League

This was another crucial match between Karachi and Islamabad. Looser of this play off will be eliminated. Winner of this match will play Peshawar Zalmi, looser of the first play off. Islamabad United won the toss and decided to bowl first citing the dew factor. Imran Khalid, Andre Russel and Samuel Badree came in place for Ajmal, Azhar and Zaidi. Karachi has new captain, Ravi Bopara who said team was in no extra pressure and Ten Doeschate, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imad Wasim and Mir Hamza came in.

Muhammad Irfan started the proceeding and bowled a maiden over. Muhammad Sami also responded and just conceded in his first over. Muhammad Irfan was struck for three 4s and a 6 by Simmons as the crowd cheers and looked as Karachi was in for a big score. At that time Sami came in for his second over and bowled out Wessels on 2nd ball of the over and conceded only two runs. Fourth over was bowled by Russells who conceded four runs before picking the wicket of Simmons. Simmons scored 18 runs in 19 balls. Irfan came back to bowl 5th over and took Shoaib Malik’s wicket who tries to took a heave to the leg side but got bottom edge and keeper took it. Badree came to bowl spin in 6th over and conceded a 4 and two singles. Karachi were 29 for 3 and looked in trouble. Bopara and Iftikhar tried to rotate the strike but Iftikhar got out to Badree. From over no. 7 to 13, Islamabad bowlers didn’t allow Karachi to score free except for occasional single or double runs. Bopara tried to take the charge in 14th over when he hit Khalid for a 6 over long off  but can’t manage to score freely after that shot. Muhammad Sami can to bowl his 3rd over. He earlier bowled with good pace and zest taking one wicket. First he took wicket of set Bopara and then wicket of Ten Doeschate. Sami didn’t give much scoring opportunities today and had taken 3 wicket till then. Imad Wasim was the hope for Kings but he score a four and became 100th scalp for Sami in T20s in 19th over. Sami on next ball got the wicket of Usama Mir but couldn’t manged to fetch the hat trick however he ended the spell with wonderful figures in which he took five wickets and only conceded 8 runs. Russel bowled the last over for United and was struck for 4 by Amir and took the wicket of Sohail Khan on last ball of the innings. Kings scored only 111 for 9 on a pitch which was regarded as 150 runs pitch by experts. United bowled brilliantly but Muhammad Sami was star bowler today for them.

Smith and Sharjeel opened the innings for Islamabad although Muhammad Amir bowled a got first over, Smith showed the intent by hitting Sohail for two 4s in the 2nd over of the innings. Sharjeel khan hit two good boundaries before getting out to Sohail who was getting some assistance from the pitch. Imad Wasim came to try some spin but was hit for a 6 by Smith.  Islamabad scored 42 runs in six overs and only lost one wicket. United looked well set to win this match easily. Haddin showed that United were in no mood to hold back. He scored a four on the bowling of Mir before hitting Imad for two 6s in the 9th over. In next over Bopara was struck for three 4s, Smith scored two of them. After ten over Islamabad was on their track to win the match scoring 81 runs.  Haddin completed his 50 in 14th over in just 27 balls. Two runs were required in 15th over by United to win and winning boundary was scored by Smith who also reached his personal mile stone to complete a 50 with style.

This proved to be an easy match for Islamabad United who have a comprehensive win over Karachi Kings. Karachi couldn’t perform according to their potential. Muhammad Sami was man of the match who expressed that he want to perform better and better every day. Bopara said they were clearly short on runs. And they need to put their performance together to do better in future. Misbah was happy and praised his bowlers. Acknowledge the importance of keeping wickets in hand in chase and was pleased that everything came good tonight. Islamabad United now have to play another Qualifying match to reach the final with Peshawar Zalmi on 21st Feb which will be a big game.


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