Northern Batsmen Provide Flying Start Against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa
Northern got off to a positive start in their all-important Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 10th round first-class fixture against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa posting 341 for five at close on day-one of the four-day match being played at the UBL Sports Complex in Karachi on Monday.
Zeeshan Malik, Ali Sarfaraz, Faizan Riaz, Hammad Azam and Sarmad Bhatti all scored half-centuries to help their team maintain a healthy run-rate. Northern will be eying full five batting points at the completion of 110 overs of their innings tomorrow, they will attain the points if they reach 400 runs.
A win for third-placed Northern will confirm their spot in the 27-31 December, five-day final of the tournament, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on the other hand need to draw the match to secure a final’s berth.
On Monday, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s captain Fakhar Zaman won the toss and opted to bowl first, Northern lost their ace batsman Umar Amin for three to left-armer Usman Shinwari.
Zeeshan (61 off 94 balls, 11 fours) added 70 runs for the second wicket with Ali Sarfaraz (50 off 84 balls, eight fours). Zeeshan was dismissed by Fakhar at the stroke of lunch, post-lunch Sarfaraz perished with the team score at 139, off-spinner Sajid Khan accounted for him.
Middle-order batsman Faizan scored a 70-ball 63 with the help of seven fours and one six. The best partnership of the day was between Hammad (76 off 108 balls, seven fours and two sixes) and Sarmad (70 not out, 156 balls, seven fours, one six) the two added 146 runs for the fifth wicket to take their team past the 300-run mark.
Hammad was dismissed by Sajid shortly before close; Sajid was the most successful bowler for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa taking three wickets for 100 runs in 32 overs.
Scores in brief:
Northern 341 for 5, 90 overs (Hammad Azam 76, Sarmad Bhatti 70 not out, Faizan Riaz 63, Zeeshan Malik 61, Ali Sarfaraz 50; Sajid Khan 3-100, Fakhar Zaman 1-39)
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