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Imran Butt, Aizaz Cheema Star on Day Two

Imran Butt, Aizaz Cheema Star on Day Two
Imran Butt, Aizaz Cheema Star on Day Two

Imran Butt’s eighth first-class century and two early wickets by Taj Wali and Mohammad Asghar put Balochistan ahead of Central Punjab on day two of their four-day first-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy seventh-round fixture at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium.

Balochistan scored a mammoth 450 all-out on the back of Butt’s 137 and reduced the hosts to 28 for two before the play had to be called-off due to fading light. 

Twenty-three-year-old Butt continued his impressive form after resuming his innings on 77 and cracked his second 100-plus score in the tournament. 

He knitted a solid 167-run partnership for the third-wicket with Balochistan’s captain Imran Farhat - who scored 87 off 155 balls, hitting 11 fours - and smashed 16 fours in his 225-ball stay at the crease before he was removed by Aizaz Cheema, who returned his 37th five-fer in first-class cricket.

The 40-year-old right-arm medium-fast took five wickets for 100 runs in 31.1 overs, providing crucial breakthroughs to hosts over the course of his spells. 

Other notable performance with the ball came from right-arm medium-fast Mohammad Ali who picked up two more wickets on Tuesday and returned three for 72.

For crossing the 400-run mark in 110 overs, Balochistan bagged maximum (5) batting points, while Central Punjab took two points for removing six or more batsmen. 

Only eight overs were possible in Central Punjab’s innings and Taj (2-0-5-1) and Asghar (2-0-7-1) made the most of the twilights hours by picking up the wickets of opener Rizwan Hussain (six) and night-watchman Ehsan Adil (seven). 

Salman Butt (15) and Central Punjab captain Ahmed Shehzad (0) will resume the innings for the hosts on Wednesday. 

Scores in brief:

Balochistan 450 all-out, 124.1 overs (Imran Butt 137, Imran Farhat 87, Azeem Ghumman 72, Awais Zia 44, Taimur Khan 37, Hussain Talat 24; Aizaz Cheema 5-100, Mohammad Ali 3-72) 

Central Punjab 28-2, 8 overs (Salman Butt 15; Taj Wali 1-5, Mohammad Asghar 1-7)

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