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Asif steers Islamabad United to 5-wicket win over Karachi Kings

Asif steers Islamabad United to 5-wicket win over Karachi Kings
February 28, 2019
DUBAI (92 News) – How a drop catch can change the fortunes of a Twenty20 match was amply proved as Asif Ali smashed an aggressive half century to steer Islamabad United to a hard fought five wicket win over Karachi Kings in HBL PSL match in Dubai on Wednesday. Asif, dropped on 13 by substitute fielder Mohammad Rizwan at covers with the asking rate at 11, clobbered 38-ball 70 to help title holders chase down a target of 169 in 20 overs for their fourth win in the tournament. But Karachi Kings did fight in the penultimate over, with 11 needed. Mohammad Amir conceded only four to leave seven off the final over bowled by Imad Wasim. Imad conceded a single off the first ball but Shadab Khan lifted him over long-on for a huge six to clinch the victory. Karachi Kings were lifted to 168-8 by Babar Azam (50-ball 68 with ten boundaries and a rapid fire31-ball 56 from Liam Livingstone laced with three sixes and five boundaries after they were put into bat by Islamabad United. Asif smashed six sixes and five boundaries in his fiery knock and added an invaluable 93 for the fourth wicket with Phil Salt to bring Islamabad within 49 of the target. Salt made an enterprising 38-ball 46 with six boundaries. They built the innings after youthful left-arm spinner Umer Khan (2-29) had jolted Islamabad with wickets of Luke Ronchi (26) and Hussain Talat (one) in the seventh over. Islamabad's win also changed the points table as they are now perched top of the six-team table with eight points from seven matches, four wins and three losses with a better net run-rate than Quetta Gladiators. Quetta are now second with eight points (four wins, two defeats in six games). Peshawar Zalmi are now third with six points (three wins and two defeats in five matches),  Lahore Qalandars are fourth (six points in six games with three wins and three defeats), Multan Sultans are fifth with four points (four losses and two wins in six games) and Karachi Kings are sixth (four points with two wins, four defeats in six matches). Shadab praised his bowlers and Asif. "We knew that if we get wickets the run rate will fall and that happened," said Shadab. "The pitch wasn't easy so we restricted them after their good start.' Karachi captain Imad pointed out last five overs in batting. "We made less runs in the last five overs and then did not bowl as per plans and that hurt," said Imad. It was a contrasting story of first ten overs and the last ten. Karachi had raced to 100 in 10.1 overs for the loss of just one wicket but lost seven wickets for just 67 in the last ten. It were Babar and Livingstone who lifted Karachi after New Zealander Colin Munro flopped for the third match in a row, scoring just four before becoming Rumman Raees's first wicket in the third over. Babar smashed two consecutive boundaries in the first over and batted more aggressively with Livingstone with whom he set the HBL PSL record of 157 for the opening wicket in Karachi's first wicket. Livingstone hit a four and six each off Samit Patel and then Faheem Ashraf before completing his second half century of the tournament off just 29 balls. But once he fell, caught at short third man off Shadab the flow of runs stopped. Raees dismissed dangerman Colin Ingram for 13 and Imad Wasim for two to check Karachi's progress. Babar also holed out off Faheem in the penultimate over. Karachi managed just 34 in the last five slog overs. Earlier, Lahore Qalandars beat Quetta by eight wickets. One time champions Peshawar Zalmi face Multan Sultan and Karachi will square off with Lahore in another double header day in Dubai on Thursday. Islamabad United beat Karachi Kings by five wickets in HBL PSL Brief Scores: Karachi Kings 168-8 in 20 overs (Babar Azam 68, L. Livingstone 56; Rumman Raees 3-27) Islamabad United 169-5 in 19.2 overs (Asif Ali 70, P. Salt 46)