Akmal’s record blitz steers Peshawar Zalmi to PSL final

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New Delhi: Record-shattering 77 off 27 balls by opener Kamran Akmal propelled defending champions Peshawar Zalmi to the finals of the Pakistan Super as they defeated Karachi Kings by 13 runs at the Gaddafi stadium in Lahore on Wednesday.

After losing the toss Peshawar Zalmi were invited to bat first by Karachi Kings in the rain curtailed Eliminator 2. Riding on Kamran Akmal’s blitz Zalmi posted a mammoth total of 170 for 7 after match was reduced to 16 overs a side. 36-year-old Akmal slammed the fastest fifty in the history of PSL, surpassing Islamabad United's Luke Ronchi to reach his feat with a powerful six off just 17 balls. Rattling the Kings bowling line-up, Akmal clobbered the ball all-around the park hitting 5 fours and 8 astronomical sixes at a strike rate of 285.19. Towards the end Darren Sammy’s cameo ( 23 off 12 balls) propelled Zamli to 170 in their designated 16 overs. All-rounder Ravi Bopara bagged 3 for 35 becoming the most successful bowler for the Kings.

Chasing a daunting total, Karachi Kings started off poorly, loosing opener Mukhtar Ahmed for 1. Post Ahmed, Joe Denly (79 off 46 balls) and Babar Azam (63 off 45 balls) fought valiantly, stitching 117-run partnership for the second wicket. But in the end, Kings succumbed to the towering total falling short by 13 runs, handing the defending champions berth in the finals.

Kamran Akmal was awarded with the Man of the Match for his scintillating knock.

Peshawar Zalmi will face Islamabad United in the finals at the National Stadium, Karachi on Sunday.

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