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Wahab's all-round performance guides Central Punjab to win

 An all-round performance by Central Punjab’s Wahab Riaz leads his side to a four-wicket win over Southern Punjab in the third round fixture of the ongoing Pakistan Cup. Northern and Balochistan also won their matches against Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, respectively.

At Iqbal Stadium in Faisalabad, after being put into bat, Southern Punjab were dismissed for 252 in the 49th over. Captain Salman Ali Agha top-scored with a 79-ball 70, smashing eight fours and six. Muhammad Imran was other notable contributor with the bat, scoring 48 off 59 balls, which included four fours and six. Wicketkeeper-batter Azam Khan scored a quick-fire 33 off 27 balls, laced with three fours and two sixes.

Left-arm pacer Wahab Riaz picked three for 33 in 9.3 overs. He was equally supported by leg-spinner Usman Qadir who ended-up taking three for 54 in his 10 overs spell. Ahmed Bashir bagged two wickets for 28.

In return, Central Punjab achieved the target in the 48th over for the loss of six wickets. Hussain Talat top-scored with an unbeaten 84 off 74 balls. The left-handed Hussain innings included four fours and as many sixes. He was supported by Wahab, who also returned undefeated on 31 off 35, hitting three fours and six. The pair added 75 runs for the unbroken seventh wicket partnership. Opening batter Rizwan Hussain scored 59 off 75, while Qasim Akram batting at number seven scored 32 off 35.

For Southern Punjab, Faisal Akram bagged four wickets for 35.

At House of Northern in Islamabad, Northern beat Sindh by two runs on DLS method. Batting first, Sindh were bowled out for 251 in the 45th over. Opening batter Sharjeel Khan scored 118 off 84 balls. The left-handed batter struck 11 fours and seven sixes during the course of his innings. Danish Aziz coming to bat at number six was other notable contributor with a 60-ball 30, which included three fours.

For Northern, Aamir Jamal, Asif Ali, Imad Wasim and Zaman Khan bagged two wickets apiece.

In return, Northern were 128 for four in the 24th over when rain disrupted the play. Due to rain no further play took place and Northern won the match by two runs on DLS method. Mohammad Huraira and Umar Amin both contributed 41 runs each. Umar during his unbeaten knock struck three fours and six.

At the Multan Cricket Stadium, Balochistan handed defending champions Khyber Pakhtunkhwa their first defeat in the tournament. After being put into bat, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were dismissed for 183 in the 41st over. Wicketkeeper-batter Mohammad Haris top-scored with a 71-ball 75, smashing 10 fours. He was supported by number-eight batter Asif Afridi, who scored 57 off 56, hitting five fours and three sixes. The pair added 103 runs for the seventh wicket.

Balochistan’s Amad Butt and Khurram Shahzad bagged three wickets apiece. Left-arm pacer Akif Javed bagged two wickets for 38.

In return, Balochistan chased down the target in the 36th over for the loss of two wickets. Imran Butt returned undefeated on 79 off 114 balls. He smashed six fours. Asad Shafiq coming to bat at number four scored a 74-ball 76, which included 10 fours.

Scores in brief:

Central Punjab beat Southern Punjab by four wickets at Iqbal Stadium, Faisalabad

Southern Punjab 252 all out, 48.3 overs (Salman Ali Agha 70, Muhammad Imran 48, Azam Khan 33; Wahab Riaz 3-33, Usman Qadir 3-54, Ahmed Bashir 2-28)

Central Punjab 256-6, 47.5 overs (Hussain Talat 84 not out, Rizwan Hussain 59, Qasim Akram 32, Wahab Riaz 31 not out; Faisal Akram 4-35)

Northern beat Sindh by two runs (DLS method) at House of Northern, Islamabad

Sindh 251 all out, 44.4 overs (Sharjeel Khan 118, Danish Aziz 30; Asif Ali 2-10, Aamir Jamal 2-46, Zaman Khan 2-47, Imad Wasim 2-59)

Northern 128-4, 23.2 overs (Umair Amin 41 not out, Mohammad Huraira 41, Asif Ali 20 not out; Shahnawaz Dahani 3-29)

Balochistan beat Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by eight wickets at Multan Cricket Stadium, Multan

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa 183 all out, 40.1 overs (Mohammad Haris 75, Asif Afridi 57; Khurram Shahzad 3-17, Amad Butt 3-29, Akif Javed 2-38)

Balochistan 184-2, 36 overs (Imran Butt 79, Asad Shafiq 76 not out)

Sr. #

Teams

P

W

L

Points

NRR

1

Sindh

3

2

1

4

0.453

2

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

3

2

1

4

0.316

3

Balochistan

3

2

1

4

0.222

4

Central Punjab

3

2

1

4

0.002

5

Northern

3

1

2

2

-0.347

6

Southern Punjab

3

0

3

0

-0.754