After two straight defeats, Quetta Gladiators finally opened their account in their last game, defeating tournament favourites Lahore Qalandars by 18 runs and showing some signs of life.
It was their bowling that won them the game, successfully defending 158 and bowling out Lahore for 140. It was a balanced effort, too, as Usman Shinwari and Khurram Shahzad got three wickets each while Mohammad Hasnain and Mohammad Nawaz settle for two apiece.
The victory means that the Gladiators now have four points but they still need multiple miracles to have any chance of making it to the playoffs.
Multan Sultans have a hundred percent winning record during the Abu Dhabi leg so far, having defeated Karachi Kings first and their most recent win being over Peshawar Zalmi, whom they thrashed by eight wickets.
The good thing about the Sultans is that they are getting contributions from everywhere. In batting, they have seen all four of Rilee Rossouw, Mohammad Rizwan, Khushdil Shah and Sohaib Maqsood find runs. With the ball, too, it has been a balanced effort instead of one man shows.
Despite the twin wins, Multan still are just fourth on the table, thanks to their poor form before the league went on hiatus in March. They can, however, create space between themselves and the teams below – Karachi and Quetta – with a win tonight.
The match will also be watched intently by Karachi fans, who would want to see a Quetta win, thank to the state of the points table and the race to playoffs.