Sindh extends dominance on points table with seven wins in Pakistan Cup


Karachi: A remarkable sixth-wicket stand between captain Anwar Ali and left-hander Saad Ali of unbeaten 145 runs has led Sindh to a win in a high-scoring encounter against Southern Punjab at State Bank Stadium.

Table-toppers Sindh have now seven wins in their bag and has qualified for the semi-finals of the Pakistan Cup. They will be against Central Punjab on January 26 at NBP Stadium.

Opting to field first, Sindh has a bad outing with the ball as SP’s skipper Shan Masood and Sohaib Maqsood hammered them and didn’t allow them to settle.

Both added 200-run stand for the second wicket with Maqsood being the aggressive one, scoring 79-ball 130 while Masood made 125 off 141 balls.

All-rounder Hussain Talat played a brisk knock at the backend of 49 in just 35 balls to reach SP’s total to 348/4 in 50 overs.

For Sindh, Mohammad Hasnain bowled an economical spell and took 2/38 while Shahnawaz Dhani and Mir Hamza claimed a wicket each.

Sindh chased down the target as they took a calculated risk at regular intervals. Four batters Asad Shafiq (62), Danish Aziz (65), Anwar Ali (69*), Saad Ali (78*) scored fifties.

They chased down the target with three overs to spare. For SP, Mohammad Abbas picked two while Mohammad Ilyas and Zahid Mehmood picked one each.

Meanwhile, Iftikhar Ahmed’s four-fer and Asif Afridi’s three wickets while defending 329 led Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to comfortable 69-run win over Central Punjab. KP are now placed at second with five wins and 10 points.

KP posted 328 courtesy off Fakhar Zaman’s 92 off 95 with Iftikhar Ahmed and Adil Amin scoring useful contributions of 76 and 51 respectively.

Zafar Gohar was the pick of the bowlers for CP, picking three while Qasim Akram bagged two. Usman Qadir, Sohaibullah and Mohammad Ali took one each.

CP lost wickets in the start and couldn’t build partnerships. Last match centurion Qasim Akram tried his best once again and scored 67 off 76 while Raza Ali Dar made 50 and gave hope to CP at one stage. After their dismissals, CP were wrapped up for 259 in 44.3 overs.

On the other hand, Northern beat Balochistan by six wickets and reached the fourth spot in the points table.

Northern chased 250-run target in 47th over. Youngsters Rohail Nazir (67*) and Haider Ali (53) scored fifties while Umar Amin made 47 and captain Hammad Azam scored 30*.

For Balochistan, Ayaz Tassawur was the notable run-getter, scoring 68-ball 82* while Akbar-ur-Rehman made 75. Waqas Ahmed and Athar Mehmood bagged two wickets each.

Read: Haris gains his form, Balochistan wins third match in Pakistan Cup