Vaibhav Tripathi ∙ Mar 10 2023, 7:39 PM

Rossouw Smashes Scintillating Century as Multan & Peshawar Play One of the Greatest PSL Games

image-lf2vmb6kPollard (left) and Rossouw (Right) forged a match-defining stand. (Twitter)

A majestic hundred from Rilee Rossouw not only helped Multan Sultans beat Peshawar Zalmi but also helped them record the highest-ever run-chase in PSL history. With this win, Multan also qualified for the playoffs of the ongoing season.

Peshawar batters lit up Rawalpindi

Making the most of the excellent batting conditions at the Pindi Cricket Stadium, Zalmi openers Babar Azam and Saim Ayub continued their excellent run of form as they provided a brisk start to the team in the powerplay overs. Having come under the radar of critics for his poor strike rate, Babar responded in style as he got to his half-century in just 24 balls.

Saim Ayub also assisted him very well as Peshawar Zalmi reached 92 in only eight overs. The partnership ended at 134 as leg spinner Usama Mir got rid of Saim in the 12th over and handed a much-needed breakthrough to the Sultans. The left-handed opener scored a brisk 33-ball 58, laced with five boundaries and four sixes. 

Soon Babar too departed after another brilliant innings. Wicketkeeper Mohammad Haris came in and hammered a few lusty blows to flatten the Sultans. He scored 35 in a mere 11 deliveries with the help of a four and 4 sixes. Although Rovman Powell got out soon, Tom Kohler-Cadmore and Azmatullah Omarzai swung quite a few big ones and added 51 runs off just 19 balls to help the former PSL champions pile up a mammoth total of 242/6 in 20 overs.

Abbas Afridi, who finished with 4/39, got all the important wickets at crucial junctures of the game.

Rossouw's fiery ton powers Multan to playoffs

In response, Multan did not get off to a good start as openers Mohammad Rizwan and Shan Masood failed to reach double figures and departed early, with their team reeling at 28/2. With the loss of two premier batters in a big run chase, the pressure was all on the chasing team. The onus was on the experienced duo of Rilee Rossouw and Kieron Pollard to see them off. 

Pollard, who earned a promotion in a big run chase, wasted no little time to get going. It seemed like the two power hitters had unleashed their inner beast as they scored at a great rate. Both batters reached their fifties and the partnership was looking ominous for Peshawar. Needing a wicket, Wahab Riaz came and got the wicket of Pollard, who fell after making 52 off just 25 balls. 

Pollard batted well but Multan still had a road ahead of them. Big-hitting Tim David departed soon, denting Multan's chances. 

With wickets tumbling at the one end, Rossouw carried on relentlessly and continued to attack the opposition bowlers. The southpaw broke his own record of the fastest PSL hundred by reaching the three-figure mark in just 41 balls. 

He was eventually dismissed after smashing 121 runs off 51 balls. His dismissal opened a small door of hope for Peshawar just a bit but it was soon closed down pretty quickly by Anwar Ali and Usama Mir. Both batters held their nerves as Multan Sultans got across the line on the first ball of the last over.

Brief Scores:

Peshawar Zalmi: 242/7 (20 overs)

Babar Azam 73 (39), Saim Ayub 58 (33);
Abbas Afridi 4/39 (4), Usama Mir 1/27 (2)

Multan Sultans: 244/6 (19.1 overs)

Rilee Rossouw 121 (51), Kieron Pollard 52 (25)
Azmatullah Omarzai 2/69, Saim Ayub 1/22

Match Result: Multan Sultans beat Peshawar Zalmi by 4 wickets