Twitter Reactions: Rilee Rossouw’s 44-ball ton trumps Shane Watson’s blitz as Multan Sultans go top of the table
Rilee Rossouw (Photo by ARIF ALI/AFP via Getty Images)

It was the top of the table clash in the 12th match of the ongoing Pakistan Super League (PSL) and it lived up to its billing. The Multan Sultans and Quetta Gladiators entertained the jam-packed stadium as 368 runs were scored in 40 overs. Rilee Rossouw was the star of the day as he smacked a 44-ball century and while Shane Watson tried his best to get the Gladiators over the lines, the Sultans were just too good on the day.

After opting to bat first, the Multan Sultans, in front of their home crowd, were reduced to 48/3 in the eighth over. This is when Rilee Rossouw came out to bat and turned the tables on the opposition. He joined hands with the skipper Shan Masood who played second fiddle in a mammoth 139-run partnership and left the Gladiators stunned.

The duo, especially, Rossouw upped the ante out of nowhere as they scored 139 runs in just 10.4 overs. Masood also played his part scoring 46 off 32 balls before getting out in the penultimate over of the innings. However, Rossouw was successful in crossing the three-figure mark in the last over which propelled the home team to 199/6 after 20 overs.

Shane Watson fights alone for the Gladiators

The 200-run chase was never going to be easy for the Quetta Gladiators. But Shane Watson seemed to be in the zone on the day. He smacked the bowlers to all the parts of the ground even as wickets fell around him. His teammates eating up more deliveries at the other end meant that Watson’s blitz wasn’t enough for the Gladiators to stay ahead of the required run-rate.

Interestingly, the Aussie was scoring runs at a strike-rate of almost 200. But the next best strike-rate in the top five was 111.11 from Jason Roy who took 27 balls to muster 30 runs. None of the batsmen could even cross the 14-run mark and when Watson himself got out in the 16th over, the curtains were down as Gladiators still needed 61 runs to win the match.

It was a little too much to do for the lower order and though Anwar Ali smacked 14 runs off 8 balls, it was never going to be enough to win the game for them. Quetta Gladiators eventually fell short of the target by 30 runs ending on 169/7 after 20 overs. Watson scored 80 runs off just 41 balls with seven fours and as many sixes. Bilawal Bhatti (3/26) and Imran Tahir (2/27) were the pick of the bowlers for the Sultans as they secured the top position in the points table.

Here’s how Twitter reacted: