ISLAMABAD - Larkana, Sialkot and Lahore Lions join Islamabad in the quarterfinals of the Faysal Bank T20 Regional tournament on Sunday being underway at four different venues of the Twin cities.
Attacking half-centuries from Imran Nazir and Shoaib Malik helped Sialkot Stallions to a 39-run win against Hyderabad Hawks in Rawalpindi. Sialkot Stallions skipper Malik won the toss and opted to bat first. Nazir fired all cylinders as he hammered all the bowlers at will to score a highly entertaining 93 consuming only 51 deliveries with five boundaries and eight towering sixes. Malik made 65 off 43 as Sialkot piled on 191 for 5.
Hyderabad's inexperience costs them dearly as they were very well-placed at one stage when Sharjeel Khan and Azeem Ghuman were at the crease. But the departure of the pair proved the end of Hyderabad fight back, as they were reduced to 152-4. Sialkot’s fielding was also below power as they dropped four catches including two easy catches dropped by Imran Nazir. Azeem Ghuman and Aqeel Anjum made 42 runs each, while Sharjeel Khan made 25 off 12 balls. Bilawal Bhatti was the pick of the Sialkot bowlers grabbing 2 for 16. 0
In another match at the same venue, Multan Tigers outplayed Karachi Zebras by 49 runs. Karachi skipper Faisal Iqbal won the toss and opted to field first. Multan managed to post a decent total of 140-7 wickets in allotted overs. Zeeshan Ashraf top scored with 40 off 21 deliveries while Naveed Yasin made 34 off 33. Akbar-ur-Rehman and Faraz Ahmed took 2 wickets each conceding 20 and 34 runs, respectively. Karachi were going on with great guns with opener Fakhar Zaman hitting Rahat Ali for 15 runs in the second over but introduction of Zulfiqar Babar left Karachi high and dry. Zulfiqar took 3 wickets in his very first over as Karachi innings folded at 91. Fakhar Zaman top scored with 33 in 18 balls. Zulfiqar took 4 for 16 and was named player of the match.
At Diamond cricket ground, a huge upset was witnessed as one of the pre-tournament favourites, Karachi Dolphins suffered humiliating 9-wicket defeat at the hands of minnows Larkana Bulls. After putting into bat, Karachi were bundled out for meager 94 runs in 18.3 overs despite fighting half century by Test player Khurrum Manzoor. Khurrum made 51 off 47 balls. Imtiaz Ali took figures of 4 for 16, while Ghulm Yasin also chipped in with 2 for 13. Larkana reached home in 13.1 overs losing just 1 wicket in the process. Ahsan Ali remained unbeaten at 51. Imtiaz was declared man of the match.
At National Ground, Faisalabad Wolves beat Islamabad Leopards by 15 runs. Faisalabad posted 158-7 after being sent into the bat. Asif Ali hammered 73 off 45. Umar Gul took 3 for 45 while Junaid Nadir claimed 2 for 7. Chasing 159, Islamabad could only manage to score 143-7. Imad Wasim made 54 off 37 balls while Babar Azam scored 40 off. M Talha clinched 3 for 10 while Ehsan Adil took 3 for 30. Asif was named player of the match.
At Marghazar ground, Lahore Lions thrashed lowly Dera Murad Jamali by 82 runs. After putting into bat first, Lahore rode on superb 68 off 41 balls by Umar Akmal to post 180-3. Umar Siddiuque made unbeaten 53 while Ahmed Shahzad made 39 off 24 balls. Requiring 181 runs for victory, Dera Murad Jamali were bowled out for 98 in 17.5 overs. Ayub made 26 and Taimoor Ali 20. Aizaz Cheema, Ahmed Shahzad and Saad Nasim took 2 wickets each. Umar Akmal was adjusted best player of the match.