Patrons Trophy, Quadrangular Stage, 3rd round

NBP in strong position to stake title claim

Daily News

January 31, 2006

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National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) are well on their way to clinch their sixth Patron's Trophy Cricket Championship title, as the third day of their match against Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited (PTCL) came to a close, at the Sheikhupura Stadium.

NBP took their overnight score of 223 for 4 to 405 in reply to PTCL's 317. Naumanullah, the captain, and Yasir Arafat (39) shared a 78-run stand for the fifth wicket. Naumanullah's 59 came off 130 balls with 10 fours. Naved Latif came in at No. 7 and hammered 62 off 71 balls with nine fours and two sixes. For PTCL, Tahir Mughal and Mohammad Hussain took four wickets each. PTCL were off to a good start, but from 116 for 2 they lost three quick wickets for eight runs and slumped to 131 for 5, 43 runs ahead in the second innings, and their position has been put in some jeopardy prior to the final day.

NBP are in a must-win situation after Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) beat record seven-time champions Habib Bank by 104 runs at Rawalpindi. NBP need to better their 15 points to claim the championship title. They must gain nine points from this match to take their total to 18. Of the four teams in the Quadrangular Stage, whichever side heads the table will be declared the Patron's Trophy winner.

PIA have never won the Patron's Trophy title in the 33-year history of the competition. They, however, shared the trophy last season with Habib Bank after the final was rained off.

© Daily News

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