short ball on middle, he swivels back and pulls this over deep backward square leg. Islamabad United are now two-time PSL champions! Faheem Ashraf, the tournament's leading wicket-taker, smashes the winning runs with a magnificent hit as firecrackers go off in Karachi.
|Shadab Khan||IU||69.85||1(2)||0.32||- 1.28||3/25||3.47||71.14|
12.30am Thirty-four matches later, we've found a winner. Islamabad United lost their crown last year, but dominated through the season to reclaim their stake as the most successful team in the PSL. Lots of positives to come out of this tournament, and here's hoping Pakistan have unearthed another Shadab, another Hasan and another Faheem.
Till then, on behalf of all of us at ESPNcricinfo, it's time to say goodbye. We hope you enjoyed our coverage through the past six weeks. Sreshth and Shashank signing off. Bye-bye.
Asim: "Kudos to Ramiz as well. Without a doubt the most relevant person with Pakistan cricket for the past 40 years. First, as a player and then as the voice of Pakistan in the commentary box!!"
12.13am We're moments away from the presentation. Here's Ramiz Raja for one last time this season.
Luke Ronchi adds to his collection: PSL 2018's Player of the Tournament
Rashid Riaz is the PSL 2018's best umpire, while Kamran Akmal is awarded the 'best batsman' award.
Kumar Sangakkara wins the award for most catches this season. Kamran Akmal (!) collects on his behalf. Faheem Ashraf's 18 wickets earn him the 'best bowler' award.
No surprises, Ronchi is the Man of the Match. "For the whole organisation to be in this position, that's what we dream of," he says. "You need some luck (to play well), but it's mostly about being clear in the head while batting. Nerves are always there, but you just need to grow in confidence after that, so 'why not try and hit it for a six?'"
Jugnoo: "Although I am in Karachi but about 25 km away from National stadium. It was marvelous to see the return of cricket in the first metropolitan city of Pakistan. I am also hopeful for future cricket here."
Waleed: "Really hope in future years we can have Indian players participating in PSL, and vice versa for Pakistani players in IPL. That would be one amazing time to be alive!"
Luke Ronchi, the tournament's leading run-getter: "I've just batted with a clear mind, amazing how things work out if you do that," he says. "The order is to just go out and bat the way I bat. If it comes off, brilliant. Otherwise, we've got a brilliant batting order. The quality of the local players, particularly the fast bowlers, has been phenomenal in the PSL. They've got a good depth of talent coming through, they should be happy with where they are at the moment. This is my first win for a franchise, a great end to a great tournament."
Daren Sammy, the Zalmi captain: "Disappointed," he thunders. "We didn't score enough runs. With the ball, we took a while to respond. Ronchi made the difference. I said to the guys after the match: 'keep working with your heads held high.' They wrote us off midway through the tournament. We won four knockout games to get to the final. All of them have put their heart and soul. Disappointed to have not won today, but I'm proud of the boys."
So, so gracious from Daren Sammy and co too as they give the fans a lap of honour. They love him in these parts, don't they? The entire Zalmi team rallies around him and walk with him. Yes, they may have lost but they're terrific ambassadors too.
11.50pm What makes this win all the more special is the fact that they had a lot of their first-choice players injured. Misbah pulled out, then the injury to Rumaan Raees. JP Duminy was made captain right towards the end, and boy, the way he's led them. Islamabad players now with a lap of honour around the ground. Lovely gesture this.
The hero of the final: Asif Ali - "Six-hitting is my natural game," he says. "The coaching staff encouraged me to play that way. Pressure was there, I've won a number of games for Faisalabad playing this way. Playing under pressure gives me a lot of enjoyment."
iamRifard: "It was Kamran Akmal who brought Zalmis to atleast this place, one bad day at office doesn't mean you're not the boss."
11.40pm Islamabad United are two-time champions. No one's more happier than Misbah-ul-Haq, who sat out of the game with an injury. JP Duminy and Dean Jones celebrate a magnificent win. Having won Qualifier-1, Islamabad had a week off. Coming into this game, that could've been a disadvantage, depending on which way you looked at it, but Islamabad have ensured they've been absolutely ruthless come finals day. Yes, there were some nerves but if you get the kind of start Luke Ronchi gave them, you will win nine times out of 10.
Luke Ronchi's blistering fifty set the tone for Islamabad United, then came a sensational collapse that raised hopes of a last-over finish, perhaps even a Super Over. Then came Kamran Akmal's costly miss followed by Asif Ali's mad assault - three sixes off three balls - to kill the game. The crowds, who braved all the security restrictions and strict protocols, have certainly got their monies worth. What a show we've had tonight in Karachi!
full toss on off stump, punched straight to mid-off
angles in from wide of the crease, defended towards short midwicket
Daniyal: "Hasan Ali's short ball is his strength and he's caused problems to batsmen all over the world. To hit, not one, but two sixes off of his short balls is something special. Well played Asif Ali!"
squeezes an inside edge to square leg
the middle stump has been flattened by a yorker that tails in to sneak through. Reverse swing, pure pace.
This ends Hasan Ali's most expensive spell in T20s
slower and fuller on the pads from around the stumps, turned towards deep square
whips this from outside off towards deep midwicket
Asssssssssssssssifffffffffffffffff Aliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii. Remember the name! This is the biggest of the lot. Touch fuller on middle and he swings this cleanly to clear wide long-on. Massive hit, the biggest of the lot
goes again, clears the midwicket fence again. Pressure? What pressure. Now, that dropped catch will definitely come back to haunt Zalmi. Once again a short ball and he muscled it away
that has been clobbered deep into the stands at deep midwicket. Picked the length, swivelled back and hammered it away.
drills this full delivery to sweeper over
right on top of the bounce as he bunts it down to third man
angling in towards middle and leg, worked towards fine leg
Kamran Akmal has put down a skier running backwards. Dropped! What's worse is that the ball has gone to the boundary, overthrows as well. This is a superb short ball outside off, he shapes to pull from way outside off but top-edges it. Kamran called for it, went back but saw this burst right through his hands. The fine leg fielder Gul ran in to throw, no one backing up, and that went away to the boundary.
length on middle and leg, tucked to fine leg
excellent short of length delivery on the stumps, Talat is on top of the bounce as he defends
sliced into the gap between deep point and third man. Wild swing. He looked to step out and manufacture that stroke to the leg side.
this is a superman effort from superman Chris Jordan. You will not see catches better than that. This is magnificent. Short ball, skiddy ball on middle stump, Shadab looks to go through with the pull but hits hit high on the bat. Jordan at mid-on ran to his right but this was dying on him, and so he dived full stretch to his right to pluck that. Hasan Ali gave Shadab a send-off too, not sure that was needed but there's life in this game and how.
steers this length delivery down to third man
oh, dear. Hops back and defends towards point. Takes off for a run but is sent back. He slips. but the point fielder slipped too, and so didn't have any control of the throw. Back into the crease. It's all happening
|National Stadium, Karachi|
|Toss||Peshawar Zalmi, elected to bat first|
|Player Of The Match|
|Player Of The Series|
|Series result||Islamabad United won the 2017/18 Pakistan Super League|
|Hours of play (local time)||20.00 start, First Session 20.00-21-25, Interval 21.25-21-45, Second Session 21.45-23.05|
|Match days||25 March 2018 - night (20-over match)|
Over 17 • IU 154/7