KARACHI: United Bank Limited (UBL) and Habib Bank Limited (HBL) both sealed clinical second-round victories in the Super Eight stage of the Quaid-i-Azam Trophy National Cricket Championship on Tuesday to remain in sight of final.
A day after Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) and Wapda both chalked up three-day wins to set up a fascinating Group-I clash to decide the eventual qualifiers from that pool for Dec 10-14 final, UBL and HBL also came into the equation from Group-II.
UBL, who last season finished runners-up to now dethroned champions Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited (SNGPL), were in a hurry to decimate National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) by a massive margin of 228 runs at the UBL Sports Complex.
In just 9.4 overs, NBP, who lost their first-round tie against HBL by 10 wickets, were blown away for a measly total of 78 as they lost their remaining six wickets — Ali Manzoor was unable to bat due to a knee injury — in just over 40 minutes after resuming at the overnight score of 55-3 while chasing 307.
Pakistan Under-17 paceman Sameen Gul underlined his immense potential with figures of 5-20 in 10 overs. Left-arm speedster Mir Hamza took the last wicket to fall to finish with 3-44.
UBL’s first victory was inspired by all-rounder Hammad Azam’s superlative contributions of 64 and 102 plus two key wickets.
In the day-night fixture at the National Stadium, HBL charged to their second success in the Super Eight after dogged resistance from KRL Sardar Hasan Raza, the opener who was forced to retire late on Monday evening with an elbow injury.
The left-hander made a courageous half-century after returning to the middle at the fall of the fifth wicket with KRL in dire straits with just 68 runs on the board.
KRL’s only objective was bat out the final day since the target of 388 was already out of question on the penultimate night when they slumped to 40-2.
Bu Hasan fought a lone battle to score 57 from 159 balls with the aid of seven boundaries until he was eighth out, trapped by occasional off-spinner Rameez Aziz.
KRL’s final wicket fell at 190 to leave HBL emphatic winners by 191 runs when the match concluded at 7:14pm, 73 minutes after the dinner break.
Seamers Fahim Ashraf and Ammad Butt both finished with three wickets with Fahim claiming match haul of 9-115 from 42 overs. Rameez chipped in with 2-7 from six overs.
HBL, who conceded a skim six-run lead on the first innings, gained six points to take their tally to 15, putting them in pole position at the top of Group-II standings with UBL on nine.
It is a now straightforward equation to determine the finalists from both pools. A draw at the NBP Sports Complex would be enough for HBL to make the final while UBL must defeat them to qualify. SSGC and Wapda, who both have 19 points, will fight it out in Hyderabad and whoever take points from that fixture will go through.
Scores and results on Tuesday (final day of four):
Super Eight stage second round:
At UBL Sports Complex, Karachi: United Bank Limited beat National Bank of Pakistan by 228 runs.
UNITED BANK LIMITED 176 in 62.2 overs (Hammad Azam 64, Mohammad Wajihuddin 27, Umar Siddique 21; Mohammad Irfan 5-84, Atif Jabbar 4-40) and 301 in 93.3 overs (Hammad Azam 102, Yasim Murtaza 51, Shan Masood 31, Akbar-ur-Rehman 31, Sameen Gul 26; Atif Jabbar 7-74, Qaiser Abbas 2-50); NATIONAL BANK OF PAKISTAN 171 in 65.2 overs (Naved Sarwar 42, Usman Salahuddin 33, Rameez Raja 21, Naved Yasin 20; Mir Hamza 4-58, Sameen Gul 2-40) and 78 in 28.4 overs (Naved Sarwar 32; Sameen Gul 5-20, Mir Hamza 3-44).
At National Stadium, Karachi (day-night fixture): Habib Bank Limited beat Khan Research Laboratories by 191 runs. HABIB BANK LIMITED 151 in 42.4 overs (Fahim Ashraf 63, Abdur Rehman 21; Ahmed Bashir 6-35, Mohammad Abbas 2-48, Sadaf Hussain 2-51) and 393-8 declared in 118.4 overs (Imam-ul-Haq 86, Rameez Aziz 74, Mohammad Waqas 52, Fakhar Zaman 49, Imran Farhat 46, Jamal Anwar 27, Fahim Ashraf 25; Sadaf Hussain 4-86); KHAN RESEARCH LABORATORIES 157 in 51.4 overs (Shoaib Ahmed Minhas 42, Sardar Hasan Raza 38, Saeed Anwar Jr 20; Fahim Ashraf 6-65) and 190 in 83.2 overs (Sardar Hasan Raza 57, Junaid Ali 26, Shoaib Ahmed Minhas 23, Abdul Rehman Muzammil 21; Ammad Butt 3-43, Fahim Ashraf 3-50, Rameez Aziz 2-7).
courtesy: dawn news