Faheem Ashraf in the news with the recent electrifying performance against Islamabad United to seal a final-over thriller
Crash, bang, wallop can be enjoyable on occasion. That is the concept upon which Twenty20 cricket was formed (look away, haters), and it was highlighted in an exciting match that Islamabad United won by just two wickets.
The second-highest chase in PSL history was completed by Faheem Ashraf, who put on a dominant display that was punctuated by three fours and a six in the final over.
Multan Sultans would have been self-assured after posting a score of 205, but they will now be thinking on their own final over, which produced no boundaries but cost them two wickets. Mohammad Wasim, a specialist in yorkers, had given up 42 runs before to those amazing six balls.
Tim David, who was on 60 off 27, was in a rage and had to be dealt with. He still backed himself and went for the black hole, and he not only struck out the Sultans’ top hitter but also David Miller on the final ball of the inning.
United do this frequently. They are a genuine T20 team, powered by hitters who have no regard for hesitation and guided by an all-around player who appreciates data. During the course of their chase, they lost eight wickets.
They had 32 to 2, 99 to 4, and 159 to 7 victories. However, following each of those dismissals, they went seven balls without scoring a boundary. And as retribution for that, they scored four on the eighth and ninth. United remained present. They continued coming over and over again.
With 40 off 21, Colin Munro fixed a top-order issue. Usama Mir removed him. At 44 off 25, Shadab Khan recovered the lead. His stumps were destroyed by Ihsanullah. Ashraf popped up and went 4, 6, 2, 4, with 18 needed off of six balls.
The left-hander initially tried to paddle sweep the ball, but ended up hitting a wide yorker that went over deep third for the sixth run in the sequence. It was insane.
Up until the last few seconds, it appeared to be a Sultans’ game. At the top of the order, Shan Masood scored 75 runs, however he failed to smash a single six. In a 16th over from Rumman Raees that cost 30 runs, David, who came in at No. 4, made up for that with a fury, smashing four of them off back-to-back balls.
The difference was made by United, who slipped in an eight-run 19th over from Fazalhaq Farooqi and a six-run 20th over from Wasim just when things were beginning to look really bad.
Islamabad United 209 for 8 (Ashraf 51*, Shadab 44, Munro 40, Anwar 3-33, Ihsanullah 2-35) beat Multan Sultans 205 for 5 (Masood 75, David 60, Shadab 2-26) by two wickets