Recent Match Report – Qalandars vs United 16th Match 2022/23

Lahore Qalandars 200 for 7 (Shafique 45, Zaman 36, Billings 33, Curran 3-34) beat Islamabad United 90 (Gurbaz 23, Munro 18, Wiese 3-17, Raza 2-6, Rashid 2-8) by 110 runs

This was a match between Lahore Qalandars bowlers and Islamabad United’s batters. But really, it was no match between Qalandars’ bowlers and United’s batters. In the clearest statement of intent, Qalandars wiped the floor with the two-time champions, taking apart their bowling line-up, posting 200. But they’d saved the best for the second innings as they dismembered the most famed batting line-up in PSL history, ripping through them and skittling them out for 90. It is the joint second-heaviest defeat in PSL.

After a pulsating victory over Peshawar Zalmi the previous day, Qalandars continued the momentum at home. Until 24 hours prior, it was unclear whether this city would be able to host any more PSL matches this year, but now that it’s confirmed they will, the defending champions appear injected with much more ruthless sense of purpose. Fakhar Zaman and Tahir Baig got them off to a more productive start than yesterday, compiling 56 in the powerplay.

United plugged away to try and rein the Qalandars in, in front of another packed house in Lahore. Shadab Khan struck in his first over before Tom Curran removed Fakhar in the next to send both openers back. But Qalandars continued to hammer away with the bat. Sam Billings form gaves the middle order another dimension, and amidst an explosive stand with Abdullah Shafique, the game truly ran away from United. Both batters combined to plunder four boundaries in Shadab’s third over to up the ante, and Shafique followed it up by smashing Zeeshan Zameer for 18 in his second. Billings and Shafique added 71 off 39 balls and it set Qalandars up for an explosive finish.
Sikandar Raza, David Wiese and Rashid Khan provided it. Abrar Ahmed went for 21 to herald the start of the death overs before Raza and Rashid bludgeoned 40 in 20 balls in a priceless late partnership to swell Qalandars’ score.

For the first four overs, Qalandars were challenged by a characteristically slapdash start from Rahmanullah Gurbaz. Shaheen Shah Afridi began with a 14-run over – ten of those via wides – after which, Zaman Khan was walloped over cow corner for a huge six in the fourth over.

Just as the chase appeared to be on track, Zaman dented United which led to a collapse. He dived to his left to dismiss Gurbaz in the last ball of the fourth over. Thereon, United imploded remarkably to lose their ten wickets for 49 with Qalandars overwhelming United with both the quality and quantity of their wicket-taking bowlers.

Wiese broke the back of the line-up by taking three middle-order wickets – Colin Munro, Shadab and Azam Khan – to kill the contest. In the interim, Haris Rauf outfoxed Rassie van der Dussen with a lovely slower delivery.

And they still had the small matter of Rashid to deal with. The Afghan was typically unplayable; his wily mix of topspinners, flippers and googlies were too much for United. Raza would add the icing on the cake with three wickets, including a run-out, in an over.

With Lahore officially confirmed as the hosts for the playoffs and final, their grip on this trophy only appears to be tightening.

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