Roy and Elliott stop champions Islamabad

Dubai: Jason Roy’s scintillating half century and his 71 runs partnership for the third wicket with Umar Akmal (35) ensured Lahore Qalandars an impressive six wicket win over defending champions Islamabad United in the HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL) at...

Roy and Elliott stop champions Islamabad

Dubai: Jason Roy’s scintillating half century and his 71 runs partnership for the third wicket with Umar Akmal (35) ensured Lahore Qalandars an impressive six wicket win over defending champions Islamabad United in the HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL) at the Dubai International stadium.

Roy, who is fresh from his fine knocks during the India series, cracked an unbeaten 60 off 51 balls with six boundaries and one six to ensure his team a victory with ten balls to spare.

George Elliott with a fine spell of 4 for 23 had restricted Islamabad United to 158 for 7 in 20 overs. Islamabad could post such a total due to their skipper Misbah UL Haq’s unbeaten 61 off 36 balls with three boundaries and five towering sixes. The 42-year-old Misbah showed that he is still a brilliant Twenty20 player.

Lahore won the toss and as per the general trend elected to field. Dwayne Smith opened with a new partner in Sam Billings as his first match opener Sharjeel Khan has been suspended from the tournament for his alleged involvement in spot fixing. The pair batted smoothly till the 10th over and put on 73 runs to give a great start.

Elliott ended Billings innings by clean bowling him for 37. Billings tried to scoop the ball over fine leg but failed to connect. Two balls later Smith too followed bowled by Elliott while attempting to hit through midwicket for 31.

Brad Haddin, the hero of their first match against Peshawar Zalmi through a breezy 73, lasted only 15 balls to score nine runs. Elliott forced Haddin to miscue his shot over long off but landed up being caught at backward point by Yasir Shah. Shane Watson became Elliott’s fourth victim for 7 when Umar Akmal took a good catch at long off boundary. Elliott also took a good catch at midwicket to dismiss Asif Ali off Sunil Narine.

Misbah Ul Haq then took charge and swelled the score. In the 16th over, Misbah flicked Elliott for a six. He also hit Narine over long off and then hit Sohail Tanvir too for a six over midwicket. He reached his half century too through a six over midwicket off Mohammad Irfan junior Sadab Khan, who gave good support, got run out for 4 but added 40 runs in 3.1 overs with his skipper.

Chasing a run rate of 7.90, the hardest hitting openers Jason Roy and Brendon McCullum walked in. Off the very first over from Imran Khalid, McCullum hit three boundaries and a six. Mohammad Sami who bowled the second over was also hit for a boundary by a charging McCullum over mid-on. Roy too hit Sami for two boundaries one over mid-off and another over the bowler’s head. The pair put on 38 runs in 2.3 overs when McCullum, pulled to Billings at deep square leg off Rumman Raees for 25 off just 10 balls.

Fakhar Khan lasted eight balls before being caught and bowled by Sami for 5. Umar Akmal joined Roy and began by scoring two boundaries off Sadab Khan. Saeed Ajman was introduced in the eighth over and Roy reverse swept him for a boundary.

Lahore needed 73 runs from the last ten overs. Akmal pulled Watson for a six with absolute control.

Watson provided the breakthrough in the 15th over having Akmal caught by Billings for 35. His knock off 26 balls had three boundaries and two sixes. Akmal and Roy put on 71 runs in 10.1 overs.

With 45 runs needed from 36 balls, Elliott joined Roy. Lifting Ajmal over long on for huge six, Roy reached his half century. Meanwhile, Ajmal had Elliott caught by Asif Ali for 3.

Roy and Sunil Narine cleared all doubts of their team’s victory in the 17th over by hitting Watson for 21 runs in one over. Narine hit two sixes and a boundary while Roy too scored a boundary in that over.

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