Islamabad United beat Quetta Gladiators comprehensively by six wickets and handed Quetta their fourth successive defeat in this season of the Pakistan Super League.
Chasing a modest target of 157, Paul Stirling put the game to bed in the first four overs with his blistering stroke play. The Irish dispatched Dale Steyn for four boundaries in his first over. He scored 56 off 33 balls with eight fours and two maximums. Alex Hales scored 23 runs off 13 balls with the help of five boundaries.
The duo’s 76-run opening stand broke the back of the chase and set Islamabad up for victory. Wicketkeeper batsman Rohail Nazir, who was featuring in his first game of the season showed glimpses of his talent and made 34 off 28 balls.
Captain Shadab Khan scored 21 runs while Asif Ali remained unbeaten on 16 runs. For Quetta, leg-spinner Zahid Mehmood was the pick of the bowlers and claimed two big wickets of Stirling and Hales. He finished with 2 for 29 in his allotted four.
Earlier, Quetta Gladiators posted 156/7 in their allotted 20 overs courtesy a brilliant half-century from captain Sarfaraz Ahmed.
Having inserted the opposition in, Hasan Ali and Faheem Ashraf picked two a piece, including that of Faf du Plessis for 17, to trigger a top-order collapse that left Gladiators reeling at 41 for 4 inside powerplay. Sarfaraz Ahmed dropped anchor at one end, slamming a quick 54 to set up Gladiators’ respectable total. He hit four sixes and three boundaries in his 41-ball stay, putting on 63 runs for the fifth wicket stand with Ben Cutting to piece the innings back together.
Ben Cutting scored 23 off 17 and Mohammad Nawaz 31* off 29 chipped in with important contributions to help their side set a competitive target.
For United, Faheem Ashraf bowled at hard lengths and troubled the batsmen and ended with figures of 3/11 in four overs. Hasan Ali was impressive and claimed two wickets for 23 runs in four overs.