Clinical Multan Sultans secure cushion of a top-two finish

Pakistan

Multan Sultans 185 for 4 (Rizwan 69, Charles 53, Amir 2-40) beat Quetta Gladiators 106 (Yousuf 37, Willey 3-22, Mir 3-22) by 79 runs

Legspinner Usama Mir and fast bowler David Willey shared six wickets and routed Quetta Gladiators for 106 as table-toppers Multan Sultans completed their regular season with a 79-run win in the Pakistan Super League on Tuesday.

Sultans led the points table with seven wins and will take on No. 2 Peshawar Zalmi (12 points) in the Qualifier on Thursday with the winner advancing to the final.

It was a wake-up call for the revamped Gladiators, who will be playing their first PSL playoffs after four years. They will meet Islamabad United in the Eliminator on Thursday.

Gladiators’ chase got derailed in the third over when Jason Roy’s run of poor form continued as Willey (3-22) had him trapped leg before wicket and Saud Shakeel (14) got run-out.

Willey then knocked back captain Rilee Rossouw’s leg stump with an impeccable yorker inside the powerplay and Laurie Evans spooned a dolly to midwicket.

Mir (3-22), the leading wicket-taker of the tournament, then removed the Gladiators’ top-scorer Omair Yousuf (37) before he quickly ran through the tailenders to give Sultans and emphatic victory with more than four overs to spare.

Earlier, Rizwan smashed his fourth half-century this season and Charles upped the ante in the death overs with his 29-ball knock before Iftikhar Ahmed provided an ideal finish with a quickfire 20 off eight balls.

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