A magnificent unbeaten 130 run partnership between Rilee Rossouw and captain Sarfraz Ahmed gave Quetta Gladiators their second successive win in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2017 edition.
Gladiators chased down the 160 run target against Karachi Kings for the loss of three wickets with Rossouw hitting the winning boundary off Kieron Pollard on the first ball of the final over of the match to seal the win.
Rossouw declared the man-of-the-match scored 76 off only 53 balls while Sarfraz Ahmed scored 56 off 42 balls, the two batsmen started their partnership with the Gladiators in a spot of bother after losing their first three wickets with only 23 runs on the board.
The two slowly built momentum before unleashing their attack on the Kings bowlers who failed to make inroads after their three quick strikes at the start of the Gladiators innings.
Sohail Khan took all three wickets that fell in the Gladiators innings.
Earlier, Karachi Kings’ total of 159 revolved around a 42 ball 50 by Babar Azam who stood firm on one end as batsmen around him went for big hits, Shahzaib Hasan, Chris Gayle, Kumar Sangakkara, Kieron Pollard, Shoaib Malik and Ravi Bopara all reached double figures to push the score past the 150 run mark.
Azam hit four boundaries and one six in his innings, he arrived at the batting crease in the sixth over after Shahzaib perished off a slower ball bowled by left-arm pacer Tymal Mills. Sangakkara (25) added 44 runs with Azam, Pollard and Malik hit a six apiece while some lusty blows in the closing overs were chiefly responsible for taking the Kings to their eventual score.
Thisara Perera with three wickets was the pick of the Gladiators’ bowling attack while Mills chipped in with two wickets.