Multan cruise to second victory
Faisalabad Wolves thrashed Quetta Bears by 51 runs in their opening game at the Gaddafi Stadium. In a game they dominated from start to finish, the openers set the tone with a 70-run stand before Mohammad Hafeez was caught behind. The other opener, 30-year-old Asif Hussain, went on to complete his half-century, which earned him the Man-of-the-Match award, and set up Faisalabad for a competitive total of 147.
Quetta's chase never looked on track after fast bowler Samiullah Khan, who played two ODIs for Pakistan two years ago, nipped out their openers cheaply. The wickets continued to tumble for Quetta - six of their top seven falling in single digits to leave the side at a hopeless 56 for 6. Fast bowler Asad Ali was the most successful of the Faisalabad bowlers, finishing with three wickets including the final two as Quetta folded for 106.
In another one-sided match, Gulraiz Sadaf's unbeaten 71 steered Multan Tigers to a seven-wicket victory over Abbottabad Falcons. It was Multan's second win in two days, and Abbottabad's second loss in two days and put them out of the race for the semi-finals.
Abbottabad's trouble, after being put in to bat, was that their batsmen couldn't score at a rate demanded by Twenty20s. Forties from opener Mir Azam and Adnan Raees pushed Abbottabad to 147, a total which proved too small to defend. Fast bowler Mohammad Irfan, who recently made his debut for Pakistan was the pick of the bowlers, finishing with 4-1-11-2.
Multan were in a bit of trouble at 23 for 2 after opener Imranullah Aslam's blasted three fours and a six in his 21. Sadaf and Rameez Alam, though, added 84 for the third wicket to swing the match Multan's way.
Shahzaib Hasan struck a violent 76 off 38 balls, inclusive of 12 fours and a six, to launch Karachi Dolphins to 195, a total they defended easily against Hyderabad Hawks in Lahore.
Shahzaib made light of opening partner Khalid Latif's dismissal for a duck and waded into Hyderabad's attack with a regal display. Asad Shafiq supported him with 31 off 25 balls in a stand of 106 that came in nine overs and took the game away. The innings lost momentum after Shahzaib's effort, and a brief spark from Shahid Afridi was the only remaining highlight as Ghumman reined them in with 3 for 29 in four overs.
Hyderabad lost Ghumman off the first ball of the chase, but their run-rate stayed within touching distance thanks to Karachi's generosity with wides and no-balls - 19 in all. Faisal Athar struck 10 fours in his 67, but consumed too many dot balls as Karachi kept the pressure. Lal Kumar weighed in with 40 off 31 balls but it was not enough as Hyderabad fell 20 runs short.