RAWALPINDI (Balochistan Times) - It was one of those matches that leaves viewers exhausted because of its high intensity. Peshawar Zalmi and Quetta Gladiators added another classic to their epic rivalry on Wednesday as the latter chased down a towering 241-run target with eight wickets in hand and 10 balls to spare at the Pindi Cricket Stadium.
In a match that saw 483 runs being scored – the highest run aggregate for an HBL Pakistan Super League match – records tumbled regularly. Some were broken in the run chase after only being made in the first innings. For example, Babar Azam’s record for most fours in an HBL PSL innings (15) lasted less than two hours as Jason Roy clubbed 20 fours in the run chase.
- Some records made in the match:
- Highest total for Peshawar Zalmi – 240-2
- Highest total for Quetta Gladiators – 243-2
- Highest aggregate in an HBL PSL match – 483
- Fourth highest chase of all time and highest in HBL PSL
- Most boundaries hit by a team in HBL PSL match – Quetta Gladiators (40)
- Jason Roy’s was fourth century in the ongoing edition – never before this many centuries have been scored in an HBL PSL edition
- First time two centuries made in an HBL PSL match
- Most fours hit in an HBL PSL innings - Jason Roy (20)
- Jason Roy becomes only foreigner with two centuries in HBL PSL history
- Highest individual score in HBL PSL – Jason Roy (145 not out), also his highest score in the format
- Most runs from fours and sixes in an HBL PSL innings – Jason Roy (110 – 20 fours and five sixes)
After Babar’s sublime century – his first in the HBL PSL – propelled them to their highest score of 240 for two, Peshawar Zalmi would have been confident entering the ground in the second innings as never before has a target of such magnitude been chased down and Quetta Gladiators had only won two matches before today in this edition. But, Roy’s sensational unbeaten century kept their hopes alive for the Playoff qualification.
Peshawar Zalmi had a perfect start, after electing to bat, as Saim Ayub (74 off 34) and Babar (115 off 65) stitched the second highest opening partnership of 162. The two batters played exquisite strokes around the dial, giving no place to Quetta Gladiators bowlers to hide. They made full use of the Powerplay, taking 67 runs of it, and dealt in boundaries after the fielding restrictions were lifted.
Saim smoked five sixes and six fours before his mishit resulted in an easy catch for Mohammad Nawaz, Quetta Gladiators’ stand-in skipper, at cover off Dwaine Pretorius. To make the most of the platform laid by the openers, Peshawar Zalmi promoted Rovman Powell to number three and the West Indian obliged with an 18-ball 35 not out (three fours and two sixes).
From the other end, Babar produced a batting masterclass in which he smashed 18 elegant boundaries (15 fours and three sixes). This was his eighth century and placed him on the joint-second spot in the list for the most T20 centuries with Michael Klinger, David Warner and Aaron Finch. Chris Gayle tops that chart with 22.
Roy, in reply, put the best-ever HBL PSL individual score with 145 not out in only 63 balls as he smashed 20 fours and five sixes. That he had the company of Martin Guptill, who played a cameo of eight-ball 21 (three fours and a six) before getting caught and bowled off Wahab Riaz in the third over, played in Quetta Gladiators’ favour as by the time his wicket fell, they had already racked up 41 runs.
What followed next from Roy was a breathtaking display of power-hitting. He partnered with Will Smeed for 109 runs and the latter scored only 26 off them. He tormented Peshawar Zalmi’s bowlers and propelled his side to 88 by the completion of Powerplay. By the completion of the 10th over, Quetta Gladiators had knocked off around 57 per cent of the target.
This dismissal of Smeed in the 12th over brought Mohammad Hafeez at the crease and the former Pakistan all-rounder rolled back the clock with clean hitting that he had become known for in the twilight of his international career. Hafeez spanked 41 not out off just 18 balls with six fours and two sixes to help Roy pull off a run chase for the ages.
The match also marked the first-ever instance of Sarfaraz Ahmed missing an HBL PSL game as Quetta Gladiators regular skipper nursed an injured finger.