Karachi Kings bulldoze Multan to consolidate on PSL table

Karachi Kings Peshawar Zalmi PSL playoffs

Joe Denly and Babar Azam hit solid half-centuries while ever-green Shahid Afridi took three wickets as Karachi Kings inflicted a 63 run defeat on Multan Sultans to consolidate their position on Pakistan Super League table in Dubai on Saturday.

Denly’s 55-ball 78 had ten boundaries and two sixes while Azam’s 39-ball 58 had six fours and a six while Colin Ingram smashed four sixes in his 29 not out which led Karachi Kings to 188-3 for the highest total in this year’s league.

Afridi then came into his own to demolish Multan for a paltry 125 in his 3-18 for Karachi Kings’s fourth win in seven matches with one rained off. Multan remained on nine points after nine games as they succumbed to their third consecutive defeat.

The defeat also becomes the biggest in league’s history, beating Quetta’s 67-run victory, ironically against Karachi.

Irfan Junior had the prized scalp of Kumar Sangakkara for 18 before Afridi opened the floodgates with wickets of Kieron Pollard (three), Shoaib Malik (six), Saif Badar (13) to leave Multan tottering at 6-79.

Sohail Tanvir top-scored with an unbeaten 34.

Karachi were sensible in their batting as they kept wicket in hand for the final over onslaught. That paid off as Karachi blasted 120 in the last ten, 67 in the last five to improve on the previous highest total of 183-3 scored by Multan against Peshawar in Dubai.

Lendl Simons, who came in for David Viese, was dismissed for four but that was the only success Multan had in the first 15 overs. Denly and Azam put on 118 for the second wicket as they paced the innings in the final overs.

Denly, who reached his fifty with two fours and a single off Imran Tahir, was finally dismissed in the 17th over. It looked like Karachi had blundered by not sending Shahid Afridi but Colin Ingram smashed four sixes — one of the final delivery — in his eight-ball 29.

All Multan bowlers were punished as Hardus Viljoen’s four cost 49 while Tahir conceded 27 in his three and Junaid Khan 31 in his three.

In a repeat of last year’s final title holders, Peshawar Zalmi meet Quetta Gladiators in the second match. If Quetta wins then Lahore will be out of contention for the playoffs.