Younis fires Abbottabad to a tight win


An attacking knock of 48 off 28 deliveries from captain Younis Khan took Abbottabad Falcons to a last-ball five-wicket win against Karachi Zebras at the Lahore City Cricket Association Ground. Chasing 136, they had lost four wickets for 71 runs in the 13th over, needing 68 off 43 balls, before Younis dominated his stands with Baber Khan, and later Khalid Usman, and kept them in the hunt. Karachi seamer Tabish Khan bowled economically, giving away 18 runs in his four overs.
After being put in to bat, Karachi kept losing wickets regularly. By the seventh over, four of their top-order batsmen had been dismissed. However, a fighting 73-run stand in quick time between Daniyal Ahsan and Sheharyar Ghani helped them build a solid platform for acceleration towards the end. But that didn’t happen, as they lost their last six wickets for 19 runs, due to wickets by Amjad Waqas, Junaid Khan and spinner Khalid Usman, who took three wickets in the innings, and two run outs.
Abbottabad were in control of the chase at 67 for 2, with opener Hammad Ali having scored 35. Two quick wickets and slow scoring pegged them back, before Younis played his match-winning hand.
Scores: Abbottabad Falcons 139 for 5 (Younis 48*, Hammad 35) beat Karachi Zebras 135 (Ghani 46, Ahsan 30, Usman 3-23) by five wickets
Tigers prevail over Stallions: A solid combined batting effort and a four-wicket haul by left-arm spinner Zulfiqar Babar ensured Multan Tigers’ convincing 42-run victory against Sialkot Stallions. Sialkot’s chances of chasing down 156 were blown away early when Zulfiqar, and seamers Mohammad Irfan and Kashif Naved left them struggling at 29 for 5 in the eighth over. Although captain Shoaib Malik and No. 7 Nayyar Abbas stuck together till the 12th over to repair the damage, and Nayyar tried to steer the innings towards some respectability in the company of the lower-order batsmen, the target proved too far off.
Multan’s innings revolved around two productive partnerships, and three knocks worth over 30 runs each by opener Sohaib Maqsood, wicketkeeper Gulraiz Sadaf and Naved Yasin, who remained unbeaten. They also suffered a setback early in their innings, when opener Zain Abbas was dismissed for four in the third over. But a 44-run stand between Maqsood and Sadaf, and a 54-run stand in 5.1 overs between Yasin and Kashif Naved took them to 155 for 7 after 20 overs.
Scores: Multan Tigers 155 for 6 (Maqsood 38, Yasin 34*, Sadaf 32, Malik 3-17) beat Sialkot Stallions 113 for 7 (Nayyar 43*, Zulfiqar 4-15) by 42 runs
Misbah, Imran lead Wolves to easy win: After a slow start, captain Misbah-ul-Haq and Imran Khalid helped Faisalabad Wolves chase 136 in 18.2 overs and defeat Peshawar Panthers by seven wickets at the Gaddafi Stadium. The duo, having been together at the crease since the 11th over, did not hit a single boundary till the 13th over, when the required run rate had gone beyond eight per over. An expensive 14th over, in which four boundaries were hit, and the 16th over, of which 11 runs were taken, made the chase easier. Needing 18 runs off 18 deliveries, two fours, a six, and five singles took them home with ten balls to spare.
Peshawar, it seemed, paid the price for the want of better acceleration in their innings. Their innings run rate could have been higher than the eventual 6.75 per over, as they had lost only four wickets after 20 overs. Opener Israrullah scored a half-century, Shoaib Khan snr scored an unbeaten 24 off 30 deliveries. At 107 for 4 at the end of the 18th over, middle-order batsman Zohaib Khan smashed three sixes and eight fours to take his team to 135 for 4.
Scores: Faisalabad Wolves 137 for 3 (Misbah 43*, Khalid 36*) beat Peshawar Panthers 135 for 4 (Israrullah 56) by seven wickets
Bahawalpur overhaul Eagles: Imranullah Aslam was the star of the chase as Bahawalpur overhauled Lahore Eagles’ total with eight wickets in hand and continued their unbeaten run in the tournament. Imranullah shared a quick half-century stand for the first wicket with Hamid Ali and then added 38 runs for the second wicket with Kashif Siddiq. By the time he was out, for 60 off 46 balls, the Stags needed 33 off 43 balls. Kashif ensured that there was no further damage as the chase was completed with 17 balls to spare.
Eagles, after choosing to bat, were in early trouble as they lost three wickets with 30 runs on the board in the sixth over. But skipper Taufeeq Umar scored a half-century and shared a 74-run stand with Raza Ali Dar to revive the innings. The lower order, however, crumbled again and Eagles were limited to 136.
Scores: Bahawalpur Stags 140 for 2 (Imranullah 60, Kashif 39*) beat Lahore Eagles 136 for 7 (Taufeeq 53, Talha 2-19) by eight wickets
Lions show collective bowling
performance: A collective bowling performance by Lahore Lions helped them defeat Quetta Bears by 44 runs. Although Quetta’s left-arm spinners Jalat Khan and Mohibullah took three wickets each to restrict Lahore to 130 for 9, their batsmen let them down.
Lahore’s innings was built on productive knocks by the top five batsmen, all scoring between 19 and 26 runs, which helped them to 109 for 4. But they too collapsed, as the last five batsmen scored 16 run between them. Opener Nasir Jamshed was the highest scorer in the match with 26.
Quetta went about their chase slowly, but two quick wickets in the 10th and 11th overs pegged them back. Three more batsmen were dismissed quickly, but after having lost seven wickets for 69 in the 15th over, they scored a further 17 runs off the remaining deliveries. Their run rate at the end of the game was 4.30 runs per over.
Scores: Lahore Lions 130 for 9 (Jamshed 26, Mohibullah 3-15, Jalat 3-23) beat Quetta Bears 86 for 7 (Altaf 2-1) by 44 runs
Shoaib guides Rams to win over Hawks: An unbeaten half-century by Shoaib Ahmed was the highlight of Rawalpindi Rams 19-run win against Hyderabad Hawks at the Gaddafi Stadium. Shoaib shared a 75-run stand with captain Sohail Tanvir that lifted the team from a tricky 63 for 4. After Tanvir’s dismissal, Shoaib carried on the acceleration as 61 came off the last five overs.
In their chase, Aqeel Ahmed and Rizwan Anjum put up 56 runs for the third wicket, but the lack of boundaries in the partnership pushed the scoring rate up. One Rizwan fell, the incoming batsmen were not able to keep up with the required rate and lost their wickets. Aqeel, who scored an unbeaten 75 off 48 balls, remained unbeaten as the team fell short by 19 runs.
Scores: Rawalpindi Rams 177 for 6 (Shoaib 50*, Tanvir 43) beat Hyderabad Hawks 158 for 6 (Aqeel 75*, Zia 2-24) by 19 runs