Balochistan’s Kashif records 21st first-class fifer as Northern bowled out for 203


Karachi: Left-arm orthodox spinner Kashif Bhatti recorded his 21st first-class fifer, helping Balochistan to dismiss Northern for 203 in 62.1 overs on the opening day of their ninth round Quaid-e-Azam Trophy’s fixture at the UBL Sports Complex on Sunday.

The 34-year-old dismissed opener Sarmad Bhatti (25), Umar Amin (2), Mohammad Nawaz (26), Hammad Azam (1), and wicketkeeper-batsman Jamal Anwar (12) and gave away just 75 in 28 overs.

Off-spinner Raza-ul-Hasan was the other notable wicket-taker in the innings with three for 67. Pacers Taj Wali and Gohar Faiz shared the other two wickets.

For Northern, Ali Sarfraz top-scored with 38 off 62 balls while Nasir Nawaz made 31.

Veteran Imran Farhat registered his 72nd half-century, in reply, which had his team on 92 for no loss when stumps were drawn.

The skipper was unbeaten on 53 from 93 balls and had struck nine boundaries while his partner Ali Rafiq is on 29*.

At the State Bank Stadium, Southern Punjab dismissed Sindh for 217 in 64.4 overs after electing to bowl first.

Six of the Sindh batsmen – Khurram Manzoor, Omair Bin Yousuf, Asad Shafiq, Tabish Khan, Mohammad Asghar, and Shahnawaz Dhani – were dismissed for ducks as Aamer Yamin, Zia-ul-Haq and Zahid Mahmood took three wickets each.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Mohammad Hassan scored a century and Saad Ali posted a half-century as the pair posted 173 runs for the sixth wicket.

Hasan made 111 runs from 140 balls and smashed 17 fours, while Saad’s 174-ball 79 included 10 fours.

In reply, Shahnawaz removed SP’s captain Umar (14) just before the stumps. SP had managed 41 for one in 17.4 overs with Zain Abbas batting at unbeaten 25.

In the broadcast fixture of the competition at the National Stadium, Central Punjab is in a commanding position after they posted 267 for five against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Usman Salahuddin, Mohammad Saad and Saad Nasim scored half-centuries after skipper Hasan Ali decided to bat first.

CP lost both of their openers without troubling the opposition. Usman, who crossed the 8,000 run-mark in first-class cricket, rescued CP as he and Mohammad Saad posted a resilient 106-run partnership for the third wicket.

Usman made 53 off 128 balls while Mohammad Saad scored 78-off 176 balls.

Later, Saad Nasim’s consolidated the defending champions’ position as he remained unbeaten on 81 at stumps. He had smashed seven fours and three sixes from the 132 balls he had faced.

Read: Sindh, Northern win thrilling matches in 2nd XI Pakistan Cup