Centurion Waqar, bowlers power KP to dominate SP on opening day

ABBOTABAD: Khyber Pakhtunkhuwa (KP) batter Waqar Ahmed smashed a brilliant century before bowlers dismantled the Southern Punjab’s top order to put KP in a dominating position on the opening day of the second round of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy (QEAT) 2022-23. 

Opener Waqar starred with a scintillating knock of unbeaten 134 amid a dismal show by the rest of the KP batters and managed a 240-run total in the first innings after they were put to bat by Southern Punjab.

KP went through a dismal start as they lost the opener, Ashfaq Ahmed, on a paltry total of 8 runs after he fell prey to Hasan Ali.

Sahibazada Farhan then joined Waqar on the crease and the pair anchored the KP innings with a valiant partnership of 88-runs before SP’s Ahmed Bashir wreaked havoc and struck with three back-to-back wickets.

Bashir dismissed Kamran Ghulam and Adil Amin on ducks after he ceased Farhan’s luminous knock just six runs short of his half-century.

The rest of the KP batters offered their wickets at regular intervals as pacer Mohammad Ilyas wreaked havoc on the lower order and picked four wickets.

Hasan bagged two wickets for his side while Ali Usman also took a scalp

KP bowlers Arshadullah and Arshad Iqbal, on the other hand, stormed through the SP top order as their combined efforts reduced KP to 48/3 before the stumps.

Arahadullah grabbed two wickets as he dismissed Zain Abbas (11) and Imran Rafiq (13) while Arshad castled Usman Salahuddin.

Salman Ali Agha and Ali Usman will resume the SP’s innings on the second day with the respective scores of 9 and 4, respectively.

On the other side, Sindh captain Saud Shakeel scored his 12th first-class century, aiding his side to raise 279-4 against Northern on the first day at Iqbal Stadium, Faislabad.  

The left-hander shone with an unbeaten 112 off 228 balls, laced with 10 boundaries. He combined excellently for 92 runs for the second wicket with opener Khurram Manzoor (58 off 113) and 88 with Omair Bin Yousuf (36 off 105) for the fourth wicket. 

Saud will be joined by Saad (11 not out) when the play resumes on Tuesday.

Northern’s Mubasir Khan picked three wickets for 91, dismissing Saim Ayub (35 off 37), Omair and Fawad Alam (10 off 25).

Meanwhile, in another match of the QEAT second round, Central Punjab’s bowlers bowled out Balochistan for 185 in 47.2 overs on the opening day and helped their side pocket six bowling points.

Fast bowlers Ahmed Daniyal, Mohammad Ali and Umaid Asif shared eight wickets between them.

Ahmed returned the best figures of the innings 3/41, Ali took three wickets for 49 and Umaid’s two wickets cost 39 runs.

Hussain Talat top-scored for his with 43 off 65.

Central Punjab were 91 for two – after the opening pair of Abid Ali (30) and Abdullah Shafique (36) put a 56-run partnership – at the close of play.

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