Englishmen Alex Hales hit a blistering 46 off 21 balls (219 Strike rate) to inspire Islamabad to a 5 wicket victory in Karachi.
Having been set a daunting target of 197 for victory, thanks in large part to the exploits of Sharjeel Khan (105) and Pakistan captain Babar Azam (62), Alex Hales power play dominance reminded us of what a talent he is.
With 8 boundaries and 1 maximum to his name, Hales reminded England what they are missing on a hot and humid day in the largest city in Pakistan. With the crack of the bat deafening to the viewer as ball after ball came off the middle of the bat, it became harder and harder to believe that Hales is both in international exile and on the outside looking in for the upcoming IPL season.
Karachi tends to be a high scoring ground, but the Kings likely believed they’d done enough to secure victory considering their bowling ranks that consist of Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Nabi. That belief was strengthened as Phil Salt was removed for a duck off just the 2nd ball he faced. The Sussex man has struggled early in this years edition of the PSL.
Once Hales was removed trying to reach his half-century, the baton was taken up by Iftikhar Ahmed (49 off 37) who anchored the innings to perfection along with Hussain Talat (42 off 31). There was a glimmer of hope when Talat was removed by Nani, caught LBW in-front, however a swashbuckling 21 off just 9 balls by Asif Ali saw Islamabad home safely.
Today’s victory means the team from the capital remain unbeaten along with Lahore.