Unbeaten half-centuries by Luke Ronchi and Shadab Khan wound up being in vain for Islamabad United as Alex Hales’ own rapid fifty chasing a target of 184 propelled the Karachi Kings to a five-wicket win with eight balls to spare. Ronchi and Shadab added an unbeaten 106 for the fourth wicket to end Islamabad’s innings, and then maintained early momentum in the Karachi chase when Babar Azam was run out without facing a ball taking on Shadab’s arm at backward point in the first over of the reply.
But in a way it backfired for Islamabad because it brought Hales to the crease, who teamed with Sharjeel in a ferocious stand, adding 58 together off just 27 balls to put Karachi in command. Sharjeel was the aggressor, turning on the accelerator in the fifth over against Faheem Ashraf when he clobbered a pair of pulls over backward square leg for sixes in the space of three balls.
Sharjeel was eventually given out via DRS on 38 in the sixth over when replays revealed his attempted upper cut to a Rumman Raees slower ball was gloved on the way through to Ronchi diving forward. But again momentum shifted quickly back to Karachi as Cameron Delport picked up the slack from where Sharjeel left off, crunching three sixes in his 38 off 28 balls during a 64-run stand with Hales.
The pair got out in back-to-back overs in identical fashion, bashing a six before getting out on the very next ball. But by that stage there was little work left to do. One last brief hiccup came via the run out of Iftikhar Ahmed for 1, but Chadwick Walton and Imad Wasim were largely unfazed during their unbeaten 48-run stand to close out the match. Wasim blasted Ashraf for back-to-back sixes over square leg to start the 19th over to bring the equation down to two off 10 balls. A single to level the scores was followed by a four struck by Walton over cover to clinch victory.