Defending champions Karachi Kings produced a stunning run-chase to defeat Multan Sultans by seven wickets in ninth fixture of HBL PSL 6 at Karachi’s National Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

Kings’ victory has given them the top-spot in the HBL PSL 6 points table. They have won two out of their three games and have four points each with Islamabad United, Lahore Qalandars and Peshawar Zalmi, but with improved net run-rate they are at the top of the table.

For Kings’, the foundation of the 196-run chase was laid by the opening partnership of 56 between left-handed Sharjeel Khan (27 off 14) and player-of-the-match Babar Azam. After the departure of Sharjeel, Babar was joined by Joe Clarke. The pair added 97 runs stand for the second-wicket.

The right-handed Clarke contributed 54 off 26, smashing three fours and four sixes –his first half century in the HBL PSL 6.

Kings were helped past the target by an unbroken 36-run partnership between Babar (90 not out, 60 balls, 13 fours, one six) and Mohammad Nabi (13 not out, eight balls, two fours) with seven balls to spare.

Shahnawaz Dhani with two wickets for 28 runs in three overs was the pick of the Sultans’ bowlers.

Earlier, after being put into bat by Kings’ captain Imad Wasim, the Sultans got off to a flying start. The opening pair of Chris Lynn and Mohammad Rizwan combined for a 50-run partnership in just 4.1 overs. The very next ball, Lynn fell to Imad after scoring 32 off 14 balls (six fours, one six), his highest so far in HBL PSL 6.

Rizwan was joined by James Vince with scoreboard reading at 53 for one. Both batsmen continued to dominate the Kings bowling attack as they contributed 70 runs for the second-wicket before Rizwan became right-arm fast Arshad Iqbal’s first victim of the day. Rizwan scored 43 off 32 balls. He struck five boundaries.

After the departure of Rizwan, the flow of runs dropped considerably for Sultans, and they ended up scoring 195 for six in 20 overs. Vince top-scored with a 29-ball 45, striking five fours and a six. Sohaib Maqsood contributed an unbeaten 34 off 27, which included two fours and a six.

For Kings, Arshad was pick of the bowlers with two for 36 in four overs.

Scores in brief

Multan Sultans 195-6, 20 overs (James Vince 45, Mohammad Rizwan 43, Sohaib Maqsood 34, Chris Lynn 32; Arshad Iqbal 2-36)

Karachi Kings 198-3, 18.5 overs (Babar Azam 90 not out, Joe Clarke 54, Sharjeel Khan 27; Shahnawaz Dhani 2-28)

Player-of-the-match – Babar Azam (Karachi Kings)

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