Habib Bank close in on innings win
Nineteen wickets fell on the second day in Karachi as Habib Bank Limited, buoyed by a fighting 86 by Kamran Hussain, and a rewarding spell by their spinners, were well and truly on top after bowling out Pakistan Customs for 87, securing a first-innings lead of 227. They reduced Customs to 61 for 5 after making them follow on, with their fast bowlers doing the damage this time, and 166 runs were still needed to clear the deficit. In the first innings, Customs lost three wickets for one run, with Kamran and fellow seamer Fahad Masood doing the early damage. The spinners then took over, with Shahid Afridi taking 2 for 32, and Danish Kaneria mopping up the tail with 3 for 19. Zahoor Elahi top scored with an unbeaten 35. In the follow-on, Customs fell to 2 for 3, and then lost a couple more wickets, as Kamran finished with 3 for 19. Zahoor, yet again, was the lone resister, unbeaten of 38.
An unbeaten 151-run stand between Wajid Ali and captain Saeed Bin Nasir helped Sui Southern Gas Corporation gain control against Karachi Whites at the Quaid-e-Azam Park. Karachi Whites, who were eight wickets down overnight, could only add 20 more to their score of 258. SSGC lost Mohtashim Ali early, but Wajid played a patient innings, providing good support to Bin Nasir, who was unbeaten on 94, to take his team to 53 short of Karachi Whites' first-innings total and help set the stage for a significant lead with eight wickets still in hand.
There was no play possible on the second day of the match between Khan Research Laboratories and Water and Power Development Authority in Rawalpindi. The match was evenly balanced, with WPDA finishing day one on 217 for 5.
Lahore Shalimar consolidated their strong position against Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited in Lahore, finishing a truncated second day on 215 for 2, with Junaid Malik and Suleman Khan extending their unbeaten partnership to 130. Junaid struck eight fours in his 84, and while Suleman struck none in his 64.
Mohammad Aamer took 6 for 48 to lead National Bank of Pakistan's fightback, helping his team bowl out Pakistan International Airlines in Karachi for 215 and gain a lead of 2 runs. He was well supported by fellow fast bowlers Wasim Khan and Uzair-ul-Haq who took two wickets each, as the PIA batsmen failed to support their opener Khurram Manzoor, who remained unbeaten 86. NBP batted well the second time round, after being bowled out for 213 in the first innings, with opener Nasir Jamshed remaining unbeaten on 54 and adding 69 for the third wicket with Naumanullah.
Noor-ul-Amin took 4 for 71 to help Abbottabad wrap up the Rawalpindi innings for 325 in Islamabad after Rashid Latif, who top scored with 82, and Jamal Anwar, added 148 for the eighth wicket to take their team from 171 for 7 to past 300. Noor-ul-Amin dismissed Jamal Anwar and Haseeb Azam in quick succession to bring a reasonably quick end to Rawalpindi's resistance. A score of 325 was more than what the batting team would have bargained for, however, after losing more than half their side for not too many.
Faisalabad strengthened their dominant position against Hyderabad at the Iqbal Stadium, progressing to 209 for 1 after the first-wicket pair of Imran Ali, who scored 103, and Zeeshan Asif added 190, surpassing Hyderabad's score of 179, and setting the foundation for a massive first-innings lead. Sajjad Ali dismissed the centurion, but only after the openers had scored at a healthy rate, with Imran, in particular, going great guns at a strike rate of 80.46 - a marked contrast to his partner Zeeshan, whose strike-rate is 38.83.
Fast bowler Babar Rehman took 5 for 73 to help Karachi Blues bowl out Sialkot for 238, and limiting their lead to just 12, in an evenly contested match at the National Stadium. Sialkot lost quick wickets early on the second day, being reduced to 76 for 4 before top scorer Haris Sohail, who made an unbeaten 74, and captain Mohammad Ayub began the recovery. Following the loss of two more wickets, Sohail was involved in another fighting stand with Nayyer Abbas, adding 61 for the seventh wicket to take his team close to 200. Babar then came back to finish off the tail but not before Sialkot had surpassed the Karachi Blues score. The Sialkot bowlers then responded well, dismissing opener Shadab Kabir for a duck. His partner, Shahzaib Hasan, though, was in good nick, racing to 46 off 43 balls to take the score past fifty. However, Karachi Blues lost the No. 3 batsman Mohammad Faheem late in the day to finish at 52 for 2 at stumps and with the contest still wide open.
Only 13 overs were possible at the Marghzar Cricket Ground as Islamabad were 47 for 2 against Peshwar, after fast bowler Waqar Ahmed had taken both the wickets. Umair Khan and Fayyaz Ahmed were the two unbeaten batsmen.
Multan kept Quetta under control, limiting them to 144 for 4 on a shortened day in Multan. Their fast bowler Abdur Rauf took two wickets as Quetta were struggling at 50 for 3 at one stage. But captain Nasim Khan made a quick 54 to ease the nerves, and added 80 with Taimur Ali (29 not out) before being bowled by Mohammad Irshad.