Four wickets Shinwari guides Karachi Kings to play-offs

Four wickets Shinwari guides Karachi Kings to play-offs

Paceman Usman Shinwari took four wickets and Shahid Afridi finished with two as Karachi Kings upstaged table toppers Islamabad United by seven wickets in Sharjah on Friday to finish second in the Pakistan Super League round robin phase.

Shinwari finished with 4-17 in his four-wicket taking overs while Afridi took 2-18 as Islamabad was folded for 124 in 18.5 overs before Karachi batsmen knocked off the modest target in 17 overs before a packed Sharjah stadium.

Earlier Peshawar Zalmi also beat Lahore Qalandars by seven wickets to seal the playoff berth and will now play Quetta Gladiators in the eliminator one in Lahore on Tuesday, a repeat of last year’s final.

Joe Denly (36), Babar Azam (29 not out) and Colin Ingram (31 not out with two sixes and two boundaries) shared the honours in batting after opener Khurram Manzoor was dismissed for 15 but the target was never beyond Karachi’s reach as Islamabad were left to rue their batting problems.

With this win, Karachi Kings finished as number two team in the points table and will now once again meet Islamabad United in the qualifier in Dubai on Sunday. Last year’s finalists Quetta and Peshawar Zalmi will face off in the eliminator in Lahore on March 20.

Karachi Kings sent Islamabad into bat as they were looking for a victory in this do-or-die match. Their job was made easier by Islamabad as they rested their three key players, in form opener Luke Ronchi, paceman Mohammad Sami and spinner Samit Patel.

Shinwari dismissed Jean-Paul Duminy for four to give an opening to Karachi Kings and then wrapped up the tail with wickets of Faheem Ashraf (three), Zafar Gohar (three) and Steven Finn (nought).

It was only through a 35-run stand between Chadwick Walton (21) and Misbah-ul-Haq 919) that Islamabad overcome the early losses but Afridi had his former teammate in the ninth over to once again derail Islamabad.

Asif then smashed four sixes in his 14-ball cameo but it wasn’t enough as Islamabad continued to lose wickets and were folded in 18.5 overs.