Haier Cup National Twenty 20 2014 September 18, 2014

Zubair hundred steers Bears to win

ESPNcricinfo staff

Group A

Quetta Bears' opener Zubair Ahmed cracked an unbeaten hundred to lead his team to a 10-wicket win over Larkana Bulls in Karachi. Ahmed's 77-ball 111, which included 15 fours and a six, helped Bears reach the 165-run target with an over to spare and the opener had good support from captain Bismillah Khan, who was unbeaten on 52 off 37 balls.

Earlier, a four-wicket haul from Ghulam Mohammad kept Bulls to 164 for 6, after their openers Ahsan Ali and Asif Babar had added 116 in 14 overs. Mohammad, however, dismissed the top three Bulls batsmen and the rest of the line-up couldn't add quick runs before the overs ran out.

Sialkot Stallions crushed Hyderabad Hawks by eight wickets, reaching the target of 165 with an over to spare. Mansoor Amjad departed early in the chase, but Mukhtar Ahmed made a steady 33 and added 60 in 6.3 overs with Haris Sohail. After Mukhtar fell, Shahid Yousuf came in and cracked an unbeaten 56 off 38, while Sohail was at the other end on 47 in an unbroken stand of 92 in 10.3 overs. Hawks also conceded 24 extras, which included 14 wides and four no-balls.

Hawks made 164 for 5 after being asked to bat, with Azeem Ghumman leading from the top of the order with 74 off 58. Faisal Athar chipped in with 40 at No. 3 but Bilawal Bhatti kept Hawks in check with a haul of 4 for 25, including three strikes in five balls at the death.

Group B

FATA Cheetas got themselves on the points board with a four-wicket win against Karachi Zebras. Karachi Zebras chose to bat but were pegged back right away by Zeeshan Khan, who knocked over their top three to reduce them to 51 for 3 by the halfway mark. He finished with 3 for 17 and while Karachi Zebras did not fold, they did not recover to a big score either, ending on 139 for 8.

FATA Cheetas' chase did not get off to the best of starts either - they fell to 52 for 4 in the ninth. However, a brisk partnership of 70 off 8.5 overs followed from Mohammad Naeem and Asif Afridi, which set the chase back on track. Naeem was run out for 45 in the 18th, but by then FATA Cheetas needed a very-manageable 18 off 15. Afridi went on to complete his half-century, and though he was out off what turned out to be the penultimate ball of the game - also run out, going for the winning run - the team got home without more hiccups.

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