The second match of the PSL 7 between Peshawar Zalmi and Quetta Gladiators was a sensational competition that the first match lacked. The finalists of PSL 2021 Peshawar Zalmi were all ready to teach a lesson to the PSL 2019 champions and it looked like things were going their way when they won the toss and decided to field first.
Gladiators look to be the heavier side tonight, thanks to their full team. Peshawar Zalmi on the other hand, are hit hard by the COVID 19 infections. Key players like Kamran Akmal, Wahab Riaz and Hazratullah Zazai are all down with COVID 19 infections.
With captain Wahab Riaz down for the count, Shoaib Malik is the captain of the Zalmi whereas Sarfaraz Ahmed will continue to take charge of Quetta Gladiators for this PSL 7 season as well.
First Innings – Gladiators Take Charge
The match begins with openers Ahsan Ali and overseas player Will Smeed walking to the pitch and Zalmi team chose Sameen Gul to open the bowling for the team. It was apparent from the very first over that the Gladiators were here for blood and they remained in control for the rest of the innings.
With a couple of fumbles and dropped catches, it looked like Zalmi were off their game and missing the presence of their key players and Mentor Darren Sammy a lot more than even the fans. Overseas player Will Smeed reached his 50 runs (35 balls) with a massive 6 to Sameen Gul.
On the very next ball, Quetta Gladiators made 100 runs up on the board with their opening partnership running strong. The other opener for Gladiator, Ahsan Ali, got his 50 runs (33 balls) on the board with another massive 6 to Shoaib Malik.
Things didn’t get better for Peshawar Zalmi after that because the opening duo kept handing out 6s and 4s like they were giving candy to children. To pour salt to the wound, Ahsan Ali was dropped once more before the strategic time out.
The time after the time out was not good on Zalmi because right after the break because Sohail Khan bowled a very expensive over 24 runs from it. The Gladiators reached the 150 runs mark for the team and their biggest opening partnership ever.
The duo batted with a consistent 10 runs per over run rate and things started to look really troublesome for Peshawar Zalmi. Usman Qadir drew the first blood for Zalmi with a sensational catch by Sherfane Rutherford. Rutherford took a catch for the history book when he caught the ball just before the boundary rope. With that, Ahsan Ali walks back to the dugout.
With the partnership broken, Ben Duckett walked out and immediately walked back to the dugout with another beautiful ball by Usman Qadir. Caught by Sameen Gull, the 16th over finally saw a breakthrough for Peshawar Zalmi.
The heavily thrashed Sameen Gul finally got his revenge in the final over with a wicket of Iftikhar Ahmed who was caught by Pat Brown. The final ball of the first innings was an opportunity for Will Smeed to make a century, but he was caught on the boundary by Pat Brown, giving Sameen Gul his second wicket of the night.
Gladiators end their innings with 190 runs on the board with a loss of only 4 wickets. This is the biggest total for PSL 7.
Second Innings – Zalmi Bounce Back With A Vengeance
With a massive target of 191 to overcome, Peshawar Zalmi was severely missing Kamran Akmal and Hazartullah Zazai as their opening duo. Opening for Peshawar are Tom Kohler-Cadmore and new-comer Yasir Khan and bowling for Gladiators is the experienced Sohail Tanveer.
After a lukewarm start by the Peshawar Zalmi openers, they started smashing it big across the boundaries. Youngster Yasir Khan made a quick 30, but was unluckily caught by Iftikhar Ahmed on a ball by Mohammad Nawaz. That was a brilliant catch by Iftikhar Ahmed and Yasir Khan had to go back to the dugout.
Even with one man down, Peshawar Zalmi was keeping a steady run rate of 10 runs per over. It was also raining 6s and 4s in the Zalmi innings, but it looked like things were not on their side. Mohammad Nawaz drew second blood for the Gladiators with the wicket of Tom Kohler-Cadmore who gave his wicket away on 22 runs with an easy catch for Mohammad Hasnain.
Mohammad Nawaz proved to be the biggest trouble for Peshawar Zalmi as he took his third wicket and got the danger man Haider Ali out on just 19 runs. Sarfaraz Ahmed took a very easy catch. All hopes of Peshawar Zalmi were on captain Shoaib Malik and Hussain Talat as they tried to stay ahead of the required run rate.
Peshawar Zalmi put their 100 runs on the board with the careful guidance of Shoaib Malik. With a massive 85 meter 6 from Malik, Shoaib Malik and Hussain Talat completed their very important 50 runs partnership for the Zalmi. The first match of PSL 7 seems like a good for the Zalmi.
There was a run out scare for well-set Hussain Talat, but he was in comfortably. As the match went out on time out, Peshawar Zalmi just needed 50 runs of 33 balls. The required run rate at that time was 9.09 and Zalmi were playing at 9.72 runs per over.
The Zalmis put 150 runs on board with a beautiful 4 by Hussan Talat. And with that 4, Hussain Talat completes his 50 runs for Peshawar Zalmi. However, that triumph was short lived as Hussain Talat was caught on the boundary by Iftikhar Ahmed on a ball by James Faulkner.
He walked out with very well-deserved back pats for his important 52 runs. After some blistering 6s and 4s by the duo, Sherfane Rutherford gave his wicket away just 3 runs to make and 6 balls remaining. Out walks Ben Cutting to warm the other side as Shoaib Malik finished the match in style. Shoaib Malik made 48 runs in just 32 balls and walked out not out.
Despite the 190 big total, the Peshawar Zalmi got the work down quite easily and won the match with 5 wickets to spare and 2 balls remaining in the second match of PSL 7.
PSL 7 Player of the Match
Shoaib Malik received the Outstanding Performance Award and received a cash check of Rs. 250,000. Will Smeed was awarded the Player of the Match award and received Rs. 500,000 in cash as well as a trophy. Smeed scored a splendid 97 runs in just 62 balls.
PSL 7 Match 2 Result