MULTAN         -         Sohail Tanvir and Rilee Rossuow were the star performers for Multan Sultans as they recorded a six-wicket win over Peshawar Zalmi in their first home game of the season on Wednesday (February 26).

Opting to field first, the Sultans gave a first-ball reprieve to Tom Banton but Mohammad Irfan went on to dismiss him in the same over with a well-thought out widish full ball, to which Banton couldn’t lay a good chunk of the bat and was caught at cover. Kamran Akmal seemed to finding the middle of willow alright, but found James Vince at mid-wicket when he tried to charge Tanvir. Mohammad Ilyas then stunned the visitors by dismissing Shoaib Malik and Liam Livingstone in the space of three balls - both caught behind with the ball jagging away off the pitch.

19-year-old Haider Ali took the onus upon himself and made a strong statement by smacking Ilyas for a six in the same over. He kept the scoreboard moving, but the experienced Tanvir prised him out and had him caught at deep mid-wicket when the youngster tried to get to his fifty with a boundary. Zalmi could never come to terms with the sluggish surface as the hosts took pace off the ball and bundled them out for a paltry 123 with as many as nine balls to spare. Tanvir was the pick of the bowlers, accounting for four wickets.

The Sultans were off to a poor start with the bat too, with the top three - James Vince, Moeen Ali and Shan Masood - falling for single digit scores. Rossouw eventually got his eye in and Zeeshan Ashraf smashed a hat-trick of fours on arrival to the crease to calm the dressing room nerves. Wahab Riaz though managed to send him back when he was looking to go all guns blazing, thanks to an excellent catch by Banton at backward point when the ball was fiercely cut by Ashraf.

Khushdil Shah joined Rossouw at the crease and the duo comfortably milked the bowlers, treating the bowlers on merit. After bringing the target down to 33 runs needed off seven overs, the duo launched a serious assault on Mohammad Amir Khan, muscling 22 runs to kill the game. Five balls later, the Sultans crossed the line with as many as 5.1 overs to spare. Having now won two of their three games, Multan Sultans are sitting pretty at the top of the table, thanks a superior net run rate.