KARACHI: Quetta Gladiators are through to the final of the 2019 Pakistan Super League with a 10-run victory over arch-rivals Peshawar Zalmi.
The Gladiators survived a massive onslaught from Darren Sammy (46 off 21) and Kieron Pollard (44 off 22) courtesy a brilliant last over from Shane Watson – who had not bowled an over for over a year.
With 21 needed off the last over, Sarfraz had to ‘request’ Watson to step-up and he delivered. But after conceding a single off the first ball, Pollard launched him over midwicket to keep the momentum going but Watson struck back on the next ball, uprooting Pollard’s middle stump off a length ball that nipped in a bit. Sammy was run out by Sarfraz Ahmed, trying to sneak a single to get back to the strike – thus sealing the deal for Quetta. Peshawar could only add three more off the last two balls.
Nerves of steel Shane Watson:
The captain was looking for someone to bowl the last over, Watson volunteered.
First time he’s bowled in nearly a year.
Bowls a very good last over to see his team home.#PZvQG
— Saj Sadiq (@Saj_PakPassion) March 13, 2019
Chasing a mammoth target of 187, Peshawar lost half of their side in 11.1 overs with only 90 runs on the board. After a brisk start by Peshawar openers (41 in powerplay), Kamran Akmal (22 off 26) lost his wicket on the last ball of the sixth over. Imam-ul-Haq also fell soon, failing to capitalise on the start, for 23 off 18 balls who only got to ball to fill-in for injured Fawad Ahmed who was hit on the face and had to be taken to a hospital.
Teenage pace sensation Mohammad Hasnain removed Kamran and Misbah-ul-Haq while Liam Dawson fell to part-timer Ahsan Ali.
From there on, Pollard and Sammy combined with an 83-run partnership but in the end, fell just short.
Earlier, Quetta’s total of 186 for six was mainly powered by Shane Watson (71 off 43) and Ahsan Ali (46 off 32) while Umar Akmal, Sarfraz and Dwayne Bravo chipped in with small cameos.
Watson was adjudged man of the match for his stunning fifty and the last over.
Peshawar Zalmi will have another shot at the final against the winner of the first eliminator between Islamabad United and Karachi Kings.