KARACHI: Rawalpindi pacers Nasir Malik and Akhtar Ayub claimed seven wickets between them to help Rawalpindi secure a 36-run first-innings lead against Islamabad on day two of their Quaid-e-Azam Trophy final at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.
Replying to Rawalpindi’s modest total of 211, Islamabad batsmen were troubled by the speed of left-arm pacer Malik and right-arm speedster Ayub as they were bowled out for 175 in 64.4 overs.
Afaq Rahim top-scored with 85 off 158 balls, hitting 13 boundaries in the process, but had luck on his side.
Malik ended up with four wickets, taking the first and last two wickets, cleaning up the tail-enders. However, it was Ayub who made the difference, taking two wickets at a crucial stage when it looked as if Rahim would take Islamabad into the lead.
Ayub ended with three wickets in all while all-rounder Haseeb Azam chipped in with two scalps.
Earlier, Awais Zia and Zahid Mansoor scored important half-centuries, saving Rawalpindi from a colossal collapse. They were struggling at 60 for six but the duo put up a 139-run seventh-wicket stand as Rawalpindi were bowled out in 86.4 overs.
Junaid Nadir and Mudassar Ali picked up four wickets apiece.
In their second-innings, Rawalpindi had not scored a run in the two overs till the close of play.
Ton-up Alam, Azam propel NBP into final
Fawad Alam, one of the most prolific run-scorer at the domestic level, scored an unbeaten ton as NBP defeated HBL by 89 runs in their must-win match. The result moved them into the final of the President’s Cup One-Day tournament, where they will take on KRL for the title.
Asked to bat first, NBP were in severe trouble with their big guns Nasir Jamshed, Kamran Akmal and Sohaib Maqsood bowled out early in the game.
However, Alam stepped up and took NBP’s score to 272 for eight in 45 overs. He took 130 balls for his scintillating 114-run knock, hitting 15 boundaries in the process.
Hammad Azam (45) and Umar Waheed (40) played important supporting knocks. Ehsan Adil took four wickets.
In reply, HBL were bowled out for 183 in 39.2 overs as Rameez Aziz remained unbeaten on 58. Azam starred with the ball as well, getting three wickets while Adnan Rasool, Raza Hasan and Wahab Riaz bagged two scalps each.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 28th, 2014.
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