Peshawar Zalmi 117 for 3 (Tamim 62*, Maqsood 30*) v Quetta Gladiators
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
In a nutshell
Continual rain in Sharjah meant only 16 overs were possible in the game between the PSL's top two sides this season. Quetta Gladiators won the toss and, as has been the theme of the tournament, put Peshawar Zalmi in to bat. There were no less than three weather interruptions in Peshawar's innings, which saw Tamim Iqbal bat through, finishing unbeaten on 62 off 46 balls. It was a pitch more reminiscent of the fifth day of a sub-continental Test match; the ball spat off the surface, and anyone who could turn their arm over was thrust into the attack. Case in point: Rilee Rossouw bowled for the first time in T20 cricket, and had Eoin Morgan caught at first slip off his very first ball.
Sarfraz Ahmed appeared to have read the surface right, and left-arm spinners Zulfiqar Babar and Mohammad Nawaz were asked to open the bowling. Peshawar made a bright start, before Hafeez holed out attempting to clear cow corner in the sixth over off Mahmudullah - one of three Bangladesh players arriving after the one-off Test in India. Kamran Akmal fell without scoring, before Rossouw snared Morgan as Peshawar lost three wickets for one run, and threatened to come unstuck.
But Sohaib Maqsood ably partnered Tamim thereafter, and the pair battled turning deliveries and dark skies to take their side to what looked to be a daunting 117 in their allotted 16 overs. With the rain coming down again, Quetta's target was revised twice, but no cricket was possible, leaving the frontrunners to share of the spoils.
Quetta's indiscipline, Akmal's slump
On a pitch that heavily favoured spin, Quetta let themselves down at times. Their spinners repeatedly bowled unacceptably short lengths that allowed Tamim and Maqsood regular pressure-releasing shots in the first ten overs. They then appeared to be in disarray following the third rain break after 12.1 overs, as Tamim and Maqsood smashed 41 runs in the next 17 balls. Zulfiqar Babar was the chief culprit, as in a particularly atrocious 15th over, he compensated for his short length early on by floating a pair of friendly full tosses to Tamim. The batsman smashed both for six over midwicket as Peshawar surged to 117. In a completed game, that indiscipline might have been decisive.
When Kamran Akmal smashed 88 off 48 balls in the season opener, it looked like this might be a tournament the Akmal family would remember for a long time. However, with Kamran's stay lasting all of three deliveries today, the brothers now have four ducks in their last seven innings in the PSL, two apiece. The momentum the pair had been building up to stake a claim in the national side is fizzing out again.
Where they stand
Quetta and Peshawar both gained a point from the abandonment, and now have five each - one more than third-placed Islamabad United. Peshawar are ahead with a superior net run rate.