Monday, 26 March 2018 - 11:48
Islamabad United wins PSL 2018


New Zealander Luke Ronchi entertained cricket-starved fans in Karachi with a half-century as he anchored Islamabad United to a three-wicket win over defending champion Peshawar Zalmi in the Pakistan Super League final last night (Mar. 25).
Islamabad, which won the inaugural PSL in the United Arab Emirates in 2016, raced to 154-7 in 16.5 overs with Ronchi hitting 52 off 26 balls, including five sixes and four boundaries.
Peshawar had earlier struggled to 148-9 in Pakistan's biggest city after captain Darren Sammy won the toss and opted to bat first but their star batsman in the tournament, Kamran Akmal, fell for only 1 in the third over.
Chris Jordan gave Peshawar a glimmer of hope when he removed Ronchi (52) and captain JP Duminy (2).
But little-known Asif Ali (26) smacked three successive sixes off Hasan Ali, and then Faheem Ashraf (6) raised the victory with a six off Wahab Riaz.
Spectators endured long queues and navigated stringent security checkpoints to witness a high-profile cricket match in this southern port city, hosting a game of such stature for the first time in nine years.
At least 8,000 security personnel that also included armed soldiers guarded the 27,000 capacity National Stadium with Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi among spectators.
Ronchi finished as the tournament's leading scorer with 435 runs in 11 matches.

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