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Sami held his nerve to deliver a stunning over where he gave away just 3 runs and secured a vital 1-run win for his team Getty Images (File Photos)

Mohammad Sami-inspired Islamabad United beat Quetta Gladiators by 1 run in Pakistan Super League s (PSL) match no. 17 in Dubai on Friday. In a thrilling finish, where Quetta needed just 5 runs to win from the final over with plenty of batting arsenal left, Sami held his nerve to deliver a stunning over where he gave away just 3 runs and secured a vital win for his team. The victory also ensured that Islamabad qualified for the playoffs. The defending champions are thus still in the hunt to defend their title. Quetta, on the other hand, will have a lot to think about after losing the match which they dominated for 39 out of the total 40 overs. PSL 2017: Points table & team standings

Chasing 166 to win, Quetta had begun their chase well. Asad Shafiq and Ahmed Shehzad made a confident start before Shafiq fell to Mohammad Irfan. Pakistan s No. 6 in Tests, Shafiq dragged one from Irfan on to his stumps while attempting a pull. He was replaced by Kevin Pietersen, who then added 133 runs with Shehzad for the second wicket, putting Quetta firmly on course of the win. Shehzad too brought up his fifty, his second in a row, in the meantime. Live Cricket Updates, Quetta Gladiators vs Islamabad United at Dubai

No one would have thought Quetta could lose by the time these two were playing. While Shehzad launched the attack first, it was Pietersen who shifted gears later on, quickly reaching to 69 off just 42 balls hitting 3 sixes and 6 fours. When he fell, Quetta needed 17 runs to win from 18 balls with 8 wickets in hand.

He was quickly followed back in the hut by his partner Shehzad, who was dismissed for 59 by Sami. Here on, Quetta s star studded batting line-up saw the side lose helplessly. Their skipper Sarfraz Ahmed, who was the next to go, earned some criticism for sending Anwar Ali ahead of the likes of Mahmudullah, Thisara Perera and Mohammad Nawaz all specialist batsmen. Anwar could manage just 2 off 5, playing a major role in the loss. He could score just a single off three balls in the final over before getting run out, while his partner Rilee Rossouw scored 2 off 3, as Sami sealed the match in Islamabad s favour. PSL 2017: Peshawar Zalmi bag crucial victory against Lahore Qalandars

For Islamabad, it was a collective effort with the ball, as Irfan, Rumman Raees, Shadab Khan and Sami all bowled well in tandem. Sami, who was most expensive of the four, was awarded with the Man of the Match award though for his exceptional over.

Earlier, Quetta won the toss and asked Islamabad to bat first. Unlike Quetta, Islamabad s innings was a story about collective contribution by the batsmen. After losing Dwayne Smith (0) early, Rafatullah Mohmand (17) and young Hussain Talat (56) added 60 runs for the second wicket. After Rafatullah s dismissal, Talat kept going and brought up his fifty. Once he went back, skipper Misbah-ul-Haq (25), Brad Haddin (22) and later Shane Watson with a cameo (16-ball 29) added vital runs to take team s total to 165 for 6. Zulfiqar Babar was the pick of the bowlers for Quetta with figures of 2 for 17. Anwar Ali, who had a horrendous time with the bat, was horrible with the ball too, as he leaked 51 runs from his four overs.

With this close win, Islamabad have qualified for the playoffs. They now have 8 points from 7 games. They have joined Quetta, who are at the top with 9 points from the 7 games they have played.

Brief scores:

Islamabad United 165 for 6 (Hussain Talat 56, Shane Watson 29; Zulfiqar Babar 2 for 17, Anwar Ali 2 for 51) beat Quetta Gladiators 164 for 5 (Kevin Pietersen 69, Ahmed Shehzad 59; Mohammad Irfan 1 for 23, Rumman Raees 1 for 26, Shadab Khan 1 for 28, Mohammad Sami 1 for 33) by 1 run.