Hamza bowls Karachi to maiden win in PSL 7

LAHORE – Brilliant bowling by player of the match Mir Hamza helped Karachi Kings record their maiden victory in the Pakistan Super League 7 as they beat Lahore Qalandars by 22 runs in the 26th fixtures of the T20 league here at jam-packed Gaddafi Stadium on Friday night.

Karachi, who had lost all eight of their season’s matches before Friday night, had Hamza and the rest of the bowlers to thank for salvaging a victory for Kings, the winners of 2020 edition, at long last despite a below-par first innings score of 149.

Chasing the 150-run target, Lahore Qalandars batters couldn’t come up to the expectations of house-full crowd, which thronged the stadium to witness the star-studded batting line up amusing them with their smashing shots and towering sixes. But the Qalandars never quite recovered from the early loss of the prolific Fakhar Zaman (1) – tournament’s highest run-getter – and kept losing wickets at regular intervals as the Kings bowlers squeezed the scoring rate.

Mohammad Hafeez put life in the match with his impressive 33 runs, which he gathered playing 24 balls with the help of 4 fours. David Weise also batted with responsibility and cracked 23-ball 31 runs that included 2 fours and 1 six. Harry Brook was another Qalandars batter, who struck 23-ball 26 to revive the Qalandars chase with a 55-run sixth-wicket partnership.

The home side needed 31 runs to win in the last two overs, when Hamza, who had earlier dismissed both the openers, bowled a sensational penultimate over, where he accounted for both Weise and Brook and conceded only a six to Weise to help Karachi Kings strengthen their grip. Chris Jordan removed Rashid Khan and Qalandars skipper Shaheen Shah Afridi was run out as Qalandars finished at 127 for 9 in their 20 overs.

Earlier, Karachi Kings won the toss and opted to bat first. Joe Clarke, who swapped his batting number with Sharjeel Khan, fell for paltry four. Regular opener Sharjeel (2), who came to bat at number three, was dismissed by Shaheen Afridi to leave Kings 24 for 2 in three overs. Babar Azam added 34 for the third-wicket with Qasim Akram, who was bowled by Rashid for 26 while the wily Qalandars leg-spinner also accounted for Babar (39 off 32 balls, five fours).

Rashid tore through the Kings middle-order with a sensational spell of 4-17. The Afghan finished his HBL PSL 7 stint with 11 wickets in eight games, Rashid, who will be on national duty, will be replaced by Australian leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed in the Qalandars squad.

After Rashid’s heroics with the ball, pacer Zaman Khan polished off the Kings tail finishing with four wickets for 16 in 3.5 overs – Zaman’s best return in T20s. Lewis Gregory contributed 27 off 16 (five fours) to take Kings to their eventual 149 all out total in 19.5 overs.

Player of the match Mir Hamza said: “There was some bounce to offer, we desperately wanted to win a match for Karachi and bring some smiles to our fans. Babar and I were constantly discussing about what line to bowl to Weise, he is a good hitter and has big-hitting skills, we were able to bluff him and I succeeded in getting him out with a yorker.”

Scores in brief

KARACHI KINGS 149 all out, 19.5 overs (Babar Azam 39, Lewis Gregory 27; Zaman Khan 4-16, Rashid Khan 4-17) beat LAHORE QALANDARS 127 for 9, 20 overs (Mohammad Hafeez 33, David Wiese 31; Mir Hamza 4-27, Chris Jordan 2-23) by 22 runs.

28th MATCH

Quetta Gladiators

vs

Karachi Kings

At 2:30 pm

29th MATCH

Multan Sultans

vs

Islamabad United

At 7:30 pm

 

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