Its the big day for PSL, Quetta Gladiators and Islamabad United will fight off for the big prize of becoming the first PSL champions.
Its like a festival in Dubai, wonderful fireworks in the stadium to start off the day, all commentators are dressed beautifully in Shalwar Kameez and waistcoat, representing the rich culture of Pakistan.
Too much excitement in the atmosphere for the big final clash!
Ahmed Shahzad is ready for the big game.
There are high expectations from this game, specially the performers of the tournament, Mohammad Nawaz, Kevin Pieterson, Sharjeel Khan, Andre Russell and others, who have been shining throughout the tournament.
Ramiz Raja has rated Islamabad United as the favorites to win this battle. According to Raja, Islamabad United has a slight edge over the Gladiators due to their recent run in the tournament.
Pat Symcox doing the pitch report, the wicket is a fresh one and has lots of runs in it.
Misbah ul Haq has won the toss for Islamabad United and has opted to field first. The Islamabad skipper is confident of his team’s chasing abilities, he said, “We have won many matches chasing”, Misbah wants to neutralize Gladiators’ strength, “Quetta is also good at chasing, so we do not want to give them the liberty to chase down the target.”
Sarfaraz Ahmed seems confident, although, he also wanted to bat first if he had won the toss. Sarfaraz said, “Its a fresh pitch, we would have liked to bat first if we had won the toss”. Sarfaraz also said “Cricket is the binding force in Pakistan and we won to this game for the people of Quetta”.
Both the teams are going with their tried and tested playing XI in this all important game.
Sharjeel Khan talked to Rameez Raja, he said, “We are playing 12 match of the tournament, this required fair bit of fitness.” He seems extremely confident after the blistering century in the last game.
Islamabad United lined up
Quetta Gladiators line up
UAE officials are in the stadium.
Pakistani national anthem being played in the housefull stadium, the atmosphere is simply electrifying! A proud moment for Pakistani fans.
The local hero, Bismillah Khan is to open the batting with Ahmed Shahzad for Quetta Gladiators. Mohammad Irfan with the new ball.
At the end of 1 over the score is 1/1
Bismillah Khan went without scoring, Mohammad Irfan got the better of Bismillah with the extra bounce.
Kevin Pieterson is the new man in.
Brilliant start by Irfan, just a single off the over.
Imran Khalid to share the new ball with Irfan.
At the end of 2 overs the score 5/1
An impressive over by Imran Khalid, not giving anything away, just four singles off his first over.
At the end of 3 overs the score 14/1
KP with six off Irfan out of nowhere! A short pitched delivery from Irfan and Pieterson pulls it for a maximum. The Englishman is looking dangerous.
The Windies leggie, Samuel Badree into the attack now.
At the end of 4 overs the score 26/1
Ahmed shahzad is not letting to Badree settle, attacking him from the word go. He scored two boundaries in the over.
Misbah throws the ball to the in-form Mohammad Sami.
At the end of 5 overs the score 32/1
Pieterson is looking to turn it on, he hasn’t been able to time the ball as he would like, but, his intentions are clear.
Russell to bowl now.
At the end of 6 overs the score 36/2
Andre Russell gets the key man, KP, he was playing one shot too many. Asif Ali took a brilliant catch in the deep diving forward.
Sangakkara walks out to bat now.
Islamabad United seems to be in the front seat so far in the game. Quetta needs to score big here.
At the end of 7 overs the score 44/2
A good over of Samuel Badree spoiled by poor fielding of Khalid Latif on the short short third-man that went to the fence.
At the end of 8 overs the score 51/2
Sangakkara scored a boundary off the last ball that turned it a productive over.
At the end of 9 overs the score 58/2
A boundary off the edge of Ahmed Shahzad made it a decent over for Quetta.
At the end of 10 overs the score 68/2
Two poor deliveries from Imran Khalid and Shahzad made the most of it, he scored two boundaries off the over.
At the end of 11 overs the score 78/2
Shahzad playing too many shots off the over, he got a boundary, but he skied one, Imran Khalid put down a comfortable catch. He covered the ground, but couldn’t grab the catch. Poor fielding. Another boundary off the last ball of the over.
At the end of 12 overs the score 91/2
Kumara Sangakkara taking on Imran Khalid, coming down the track and scoring boundaries. Sanga nearly knocked down Aleem Dar with a vicious straight hit.
At the end of 13 overs the score 101/2
Sami bowled a pacy first delivery of the over and Sangakkara just lofted it effortlessly over cover for a six. That was Sanga at his best.
Ali Zafar interviewed by Alan Wilkins, they both sung the PSL anthem as well.
Dwayne Smith with the ball in hand.
At the end of 14 overs the score 117/2
Sangakkara extremely soothing to the yes, scored 2 fours and a six of the over with absolutely no effort. He is class, brought up his 50 in the over.
At the end of 15 overs the score 129/3
Sangakkara perishes, a slower one from Andre Russell and he couldn’t timed it well. A crucial wicket in the context of the game.
The young sensation, Mohammad Nawaz is the new batsman.
Ahmed Shahzad also brings up his second half century of the tournament with a boundary.
AYE HAYE HAYE!
— PakistanSuperLeague (@thePSLt20) February 23, 2016
At the end of 16 overs the score 140/4
Mohammad Nawaz hit a big blow off Badree on the first delivery of the over, Badree made a strong comeback by getting him clean bowled. The ball was too full to cut.
Captain. Sarfaraz walks out to bat now.
At the end of 17 overs the score 150/5
Ahmed Shahzad after hitting a glorious six off Sami, got out playing a ramp shot.
KP talking to commentators, “We have scored decent enough, now everything is all about momentum.” Its the third final for KP in three months, he was on the loosing side in the previous too. The English star seems confident that the PSL will bring glory to Pakistan cricket.
At the end of 18 overs the score 155/6
The skipper looses his wicket without doing anything significant, he was trying to slog Irfan, but the extra bounce got the better of him. An impressive over by Irfan.
At the end of 19 overs the score 159/6
A boundary and the rest of dot balls from Anwar Ali.
At the end of 20 overs the score 174/7
Anwar Ali falls after hitting a six and getting caught in the deep. Elliott ended the innings with a six.
Sharjeel Khan and Dwayne Smith to open the innings, Anwar Ali is on the attack,
At the end of 1 over the score 15/0
Two boundaries by Dwayne Smith and a huge six to finish off the over by Sharjeel Khan.
At the end of 2 overs the score 24/0
Dwayne Smith is looking extremely dangerous today, punished Nathan McCullum in the over.
At the end of 3 overs the score 32/0
Another six in the over by Smith, Anwar Ali made a strong comeback.
At the end of 4 overs the score 40/0
Quetta Gladiators need to break this partnership. On the other hand, Islamabad would love to have them in the middle.
At the end of 5 overs the score 46/0
Aizaz Cheema bowled a decent over in the context of the game.
At the end of 6 overs the score 55/1
The centurian perishes, he was going for the glory shot off Nathan McCullum, he missed the line and the slowness of the delivery was too good for Sharjeel to handle.
At the end of 7 overs the score 67/1
Dwayne Smith is looking to finish off the contest in a hurry, he has finally announced his arrival today. Exciting batting!
At the end of 8 overs the score 68/1
Mohammad Nawaz is an exceptional talent, he leaked just one run off the over, amazing bowling by the slow left arm.
Allan Wilkins under the magic spell of PSL, singing the official anthem with Ali Zafar.
— PakistanSuperLeague (@thePSLt20) February 23, 2016
At the end of 9 overs the score 79/1
Dwayne Smith clearing the fence with no difficulty whatsoever.
At the end of 10 overs the score 83/1
Batsmen respecting Nawaz. he is keeping it tight.
At the end of 11 overs the score 94/1
Aizaz Cheema under the pump now, Dwayne Smith is too hot to handle today.
Spectators are loving every bit of this big game.
At the end of 12 overs the score 104/1
Islamabad United is in complete control of the game. They need 71 runs off 8 overs with 8.87 runs per over.
At the end of 13 overs the score 120/1
Brad Haddin has joined Dwayne Smith, they are going all guns blazing, both of them hitting a six off Grant Elliott in the over.
At the end of 14 overs the score 130/1
Islamabad United batsmen are looking to end the match in the hurry, The Shooting Star is almost in the possession of Islamabad.
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Shahid Khan Afridi is in the house. Boom Boom said “PSL has been a wonderful experience, people have come out in great numbers and Peshawar Zalmi has been a sensation in the tournament”, he added, “The first edition of the PSL has not given much talented players to Pakistan, it would take 3 4 years for PSL to give talented fast bowlers and batsmen. Pakistan has found a couple of good spinners from this tournament, but no batsman or a pacer which Pakistan needs at the moment.”
At the end of 15 overs the score 137/1
Brad Haddin brought up his 50. A crucial match winning innings.
At the end of 16 overs the score 147/2
Quetta finally gets Dwayne Smith, but, it is maybe too late for them. Another West Indian replaces his teammate, Andre Russell is at the crease now.
Russell is in the mood, he got off the mark with a huge hit over covers.
At the end of 17 overs the score 159/3
Andre Russell looses his wicket, but, it didn’t halt Islamabad, Khalid Latif has now joined the party.
At the end of 18 overs the score 169/3
Maybe its too hot for Haddin out there that’s why he wants to finish the game in a hurry, down on one knee and dispatching Babar’s delivery into the crowd.
At the end of 18.4 overs the score 174/7
The skipper, Misbah ul Haq has scored the winning run. Islamabad United has come out running onto the field. Celebrations all around field, Quetta Gladiators are congratulating their opponents for putting up an outstanding performance in the game.
Islamabad United has simply dominated arguably the best team of the tournament on the biggest occasion. Dwayne Smith and Brad Haddin took away the match from Quetta with their aggressive attacking batting. They gave no chance to the Gladiators to make a comeback. Misbah ul Haq will be the first captain to lift The Shooting Star, Islamabad United from the bottom of the table has become the champion of the first edition of the PSL.
Pakistan has loved it every bit of the tournament. They got some some new talent from the tournament, international players lit the up the show, housefull stadiums and sheer entertaining cricket.
A successful campaign of PSL comes to an end here, heart touching moments for Pakistani fans in Dubai as well as the fans back home. The Pakistan Cricket Board deserves every bit of appreciation. It was an exciting tournament that brought the whole country on the same page and stimulated the love of cricket among the cricket crazy nation once again.
Congratulations Islamabad United.
After a couple of days, all Pakistani fans who were supporting different teams in the last 15 days or so will be united to support their national team in the Asia Cup.