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Multan overwhelm Karachi Blues; both make semis

Multan overwhelm Karachi Blues; both make semis

KARACHI: Multan turned the tables on the previously unbeaten Karachi Blues by grabbing a three-wicket victory in Multan on Saturday to reach the semi-finals of the Quaid-i-Azam Trophy Grade-II Cricket Tournament.

Despite the defeat, Karachi Blues are also in the last-four stage of the competition from Group ‘A’ after Quetta ended their campaign in third place.

After conceding a 51-run lead on the first innings on the third and final day of play at the Multan Cricket Stadium, the home team bowlers, inspired by skipper Zulfiqar Babar, bounced back brilliant to dismiss Karachi Blues for just 126 in the second innings.

Zulfiqar, the Pakistan slow left-armer, picked up five wickets for 36 runs in 9.3 overs. Emerging left-arm paceman Zia-ul-Haq provided decent support with figures of 4-35.

Needing 178, Multan reached their target in 45 overs for the loss of seven wickets. Kashif Naved, the top scorer in the first innings with 47, once again played a pivotal innings as he scored 46. Shahzad Ali contributed 38 and all-rounder Rizwan Haider remained unbeaten with 35.

Sohail Khan, the Pakistan fast bowler who took 5-89 in the first innings, this time claimed 2-48 while slow left-armer Mohammad Asghar chipped in with figures of 3-63.

In the inconsequential fixture at the Dring Stadium in Bahawalpur, Quetta outclassed Larkana by 141 runs. The star performer was fast bowler Gohar Faiz who claimed five wickets in each innings, including analysis of 5-67, giving match bag of 10-109.

Sialkot, meanwhile, ended up taking three points after their rain-affected Group ‘B’ encounter against Faisalabad was drawn at the Iqbal Stadium in Faisalabad.

Scores and results on Saturday (final day of three):

Group ‘A’:

At Multan Cricket Stadium, Multan: Multan beat Karachi Blues by three wickets.

KARACHI BLUES 255-9 in 83 overs (Fawad Alam 84 not out, Mohammad Waqas 43, Mohtashim Ali 34, Asad Shafiq 29, Saifullah Khan Bangash 26; Majid Ali 3-56, Zulfiqar Babar 2-90) and 126 in 33.3 overs (Fawad Alam 29, Zakir Ali 27, Mohammad Waqas 25; Zulfiqar Babar 5-36, Zia-ul-Haq 4-35); MULTAN 204 in 59.5 overs (Kashif Naved 47, Shahzad Ali 42, Rizwan Haider 25, Zia-ul-Haq 25 not out, Zulfiqar Babar 23; Sohail Khan 5-89, Zohaib Shera 3-57) and 178-7 in 45 overs (Kashif Naved 46, Shahzad Ali 38, Rizwan Haider 35 not out; Mohammad Asghar 3-63, Mir Hamza 2-38, Sohail Khan 2-48).

At Dring Stadium, Bahawalpur: Quetta beat Larkana by 141 runs.

QUETTA 215 in 75 overs (Shoaib Khan 81, Arun Lal 59, Shahzad Tareen 26; Imtiaz Leghari 4-41, Ali Asghar 3-50) and 286-8 declared in 55.2 overs (Abdul Hannan 70, Zubair Khan 66, Asif Mengal 65; Saddam Hussain 4-56, Ali Asghar 2-62); LARKANA 183 in 46.1 overs (Ghulam Yasin 44, Asif Babar 43, Mohammad Urs 23, Imtiaz Leghari 23; Gohar Faiz 5-42, Hamal Wahab 2-16) and 177 in 48.1 overs (Mohammad Urs 61, Asif Babar 32; Gohar Faiz 5-67, Shahzad Tareen 2-9, Arun Lal 2-32).

Group ‘B’:

At Iqbal Stadium, Faisalabad: Match drawn.

SIALKOT 333 in 82.3 overs (Mohammad Yasin 102, Salman Ali 66, Nauman Anwar 59, Naeemuddin 27; Imran Khalid 6-127) and 101-1 in 31 overs (Nauman Anwar 35, Mohammad Yasin 34 not out, Naeemuddin 30 not out); FAISALABAD 219 in 70 overs (Atif Manzoor 60, Tanvir Javed 42; Mohammad Abbas 7-61, Mohammad Asif 3-70).

At National Ground, Islamabad: DERA MURAD JAMALI vs AZAD JAMMU KASHMIR — match abandoned without a ball being bowled due to rain.

Published in Dawn, March 20th, 2016

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