Shadab-Salman duo propel Islamabad to victory over Qalandars season opener

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Following a grand opening ceremony, Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium was brimming with anticipation as it geared up to host the inaugural match of PSL 2024, featuring Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars. Opting to bowl first after winning the toss, United’s skipper Shadab Khan made his decision on the batting-friendly Lahore pitch.

Lahore’s opening duo, Fakhar Zaman and Sahibzada Farhan, capitalized on the opportunity, cruising to 66/0 by the end of the powerplay. However, their promising partnership of 67 runs was disrupted by Islamabad’s captain Shadab Khan, who dismissed Zaman in the seventh over.

Despite the setback, Rassie van der Dussen and Farhan pushed Lahore’s total to 88/1 in 10 overs, with Farhan departing soon after. Tymal Mills provided relief for United by claiming Farhan’s wicket, but van der Dussen and Abdullah Shafique continued to power Lahore’s innings, adding 73 runs together and reaching 159/3 in 17 overs.

Following Shafique’s dismissal in the 18th over, van der Dussen took charge, smashing 71 off 41 deliveries, guiding Lahore Qalandars to a formidable total of 195/5 in their allotted 20 overs. In pursuit of 196 runs, Islamabad United got off to a solid start with openers Alex Hales and Colin Munro notching up 41/0 in 5 overs.

Lahore’s pacer Zaman Khan struck a crucial blow by dismissing Munro on the last ball of the fifth over. At the conclusion of the powerplay, Islamabad United stood at 50/1, with Hales and Shadab Khan at the crease. Hales fell in the eighth over to Salman Fayyaz’s impressive delivery.

However, Hales’ departure failed to deter United’s batting, as Shadab Khan and Agha Salman unleashed a spectacular 138-run partnership, leading their team to victory with eight balls to spare, in a thrilling match against Lahore Qalandars.

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