Faisalabad romp to convincing win
Faisalabad comfortably defeated Sialkot by the convincing margin of 130 runs, on the final day of their Pentangular Cup match at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, and took a big lead over the other participants at the top of the table with the full 18 points from two matches.
After having set Sialkot a stiff victory target of 389 on Friday, Faisalabad bowled them out for 258. While Samiullah Niazi, the left-arm seamer, captured four wickets for 73 runs, opening batsman Mohammad Hafeez employed his offspin effectively to take three inexpensive wickets and hasten Sialkot's demise. Hafeez, following his scores of 113 and 60, polished off the Sialkot lower order with figures of 3 for 16 from 5.4 overs.
Only opener Majid Jahangir and middle-order batsman Shahzad Malik showed some resistance, contributing scores in the 80s, although their fourth-wicket stand together amounted to a modest 66 runs. Majid faced only 108 balls for his 80, hitting 14 boundaries. Shahzad remained unbeaten with 83.
Faisalabad will now meet National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) -- this season's Patron's Trophy champions -- in their third-round match at the Multan Cricket Stadium from Tuesday. NBP have played one match in the Pentangular and gained nine points from an outright win.
Sialkot, who have been defeated in both their matches so far, have the opportunity to redeem themselves, as they will be playing their next game against Karachi Harbour at Lahore, also from Tuesday.