Islamabad United eliminates Peshawar Zalmi from PSL

LAHORE, Pakistan (AP) — A rejuvenated Islamabad United eliminated Peshawar Zalmi from the Pakistan Super League with a thumping five-wicket victory in the playoff on Thursday.

Englishman Alex Hales, who had withdrawn due to bubble fatigue in the PSL after playing two games in the Lahore-leg, returned to lead Islamabad to 170-5 in 19.3 overs with a 62 off 49 balls.

Peshawar had its chance, but wicketkeeper Mohammad Haris missed out on a stumping in the first over before Hales had scored as the English batter hit six fours and three sixes to take the game away from the opposition.

Twenty20 veterans Kamran Akmal (58) and Shoaib Malik (55) had earlier formed the nucleus of Peshawar’s total of 169-5 after captain Wahab Riaz won the toss and elected to bat first.

Fast bowler Hasan Ali came back strongly after his lack of form in the earlier games to claim 3-30 and Islamabad skipper Shadab Khan (1-35) got the vital wicket of Akmal in his comeback after missing out on the last three league games due to groin injury.

Peshawar fast bowler Salman Irshad (3-31) gave his team a glimmer of hope when he clean bowled Hales and Asif Ali (7) through smart yorkers in his successive overs, but Riaz had a forgetful day with the ball as he conceded 52 runs off his four wicketless overs.

Faheem Ashraf played a little cameo of an unbeaten 19 and Liam Dawson finished off the game by smashing a six and a four off Englishman Benny Howell’s final over.

Two-time champion Islamabad will take on Lahore Qalandars in Eliminator 2 on Friday and the winner will meet defending champion Multan Sultans in the final on Sunday.


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