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Ronchi, Asif Ali power Islamabad to second PSL title

Luke Ronchi played another decisive knock in the final
Luke Ronchi played another decisive knock in the final

Islamabad United 154-7 (Ronchi 52) beat
Peshawar Zalmi 148-9 (Shadab 3-25) by three wickets
Final, Pakistan Super League, Karachi

Luke Ronchi slammed a blistering half-century while Asif Ali played a brilliant six-ball cameo as Islamabad United chased down 149 against Peshawar Zalmi with three wickets in hand in the final in Karachi to seal their second Pakistan Super League title.

Peshawar won the toss and decided to bat first. Samit Patel (2-26) provided a terrific start for Islamabad with the ball as they dismissed an in-form Kamran Akmal (1) and Mohammad Hafeez (8).

Andre Fletcher (21) tried to up the ante hitting four boundaries in the 15 deliveries he faced before he was trapped LBW by Shadab Khan (3-25).

At 38 for three, Peshawar desperately needed a partnership and it came from Chris Jordan (36) and Liam Dawson (30) as they resurrected the innings with a 52-run stand but once they fell the rest of the batting capitulated before Wahab Riaz (28 not out) with his 14-ball cameo helped them post 148 for nine in the 20 overs.

In the chase, Ronchi (52) smashed five sixes and three boundaries in the first five overs to complete a 15-ball fifty as Islamabad ended the powerplay with a score of 66 for naught.

Sahibzada Farhan (44) too joined the onslaught but the 96-run opening stand ended when Ronchi was caught at point off Jordan (2-22) in the 10th over.

On what looked a comfortable chase, Hasan Ali (2-53), Riaz (2-28) and Jordan provided hope for Peshawar with the wickets of Farhan, Chadwick Walton (0), JP Duminy (2), Samit (10), Shadab (1) and Hussain Talat (7).

Just as Peshawar sensed an opportunity, Asif (26 not out), who was dropped by Akmal in the 15th over that also went for an overthrow hit three maximums in the six deliveries he faced to complete the chase in 16.5 overs with three wickets in hand to complete the win.

Ronchi was named the player of the match and also the player of the tournament.

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