Jamshed takes centre stage as Patron's XI surge ahead with lead
Patron's XI 361 for 3 (Jamshed 182, Raheem 77, Naumanullah 46*, Alam 28*,Chigumbura
2-61) lead Zimbabweans 209 by 152 runs
Nasir Jamshed scored an entertaining 182 to help Patron's XI gain a 152-run lead at the close of day two against the Zimbabweans in Karachi.
Jamshed's 240-ball knock rounded off a disappointing day for the tourists, who failed to impress with the ball and dropped crucial chances. Hitting 16 fours and seven sixes - most of which landed in the region between midwicket and long on - Jamshed shred a poor Zimbabwean attack to pieces. He made his intentions clear right from the start as Elton Chigumbura was guided to third man for a boundary in the first over followed by a straight-driven four off Christopher Mpofu in the following over.
While Khalid Latif and Afaq Raheem - who shared a 204-run partnership with Jamshed - adopted a sedate approach, Jamshed mixed aggression with defence. After five consecutive maidens were bowled in the first hour, he smashed Chigumbura down the ground followed by a pull to midwicket boundary. Jamshed was particularly severe on Ray Price, the left-arm spinner, who he lofted him over midwicket for a four before smashing two consecutive sixes in his following over, with the latter taking him to 97.
Jamshed brought up his century off 128 balls with a guided four to third man, before slowing down - no boundaries were scored for eight overs. He changed gear by dispatching Price over long on for his fourth six. Jamshed keenly took the singles with Raheem, who was solid in defence - occasionally pulling seamer Timycen Maruma's short deliveries past midwicket - to keep the scorecard moving and bring up the century partnership in 35 overs.
The attack was sustained, with slogs being employed on occasion. Jamshed smashed his fifth six to bring up the 150 partnership before Raheem joined in the action by ferociously cutting Mpofu past point. But the Zimbabweans got some respite after two more sixes went over the long-on fielder's head. Jamshed, perhaps too eager to get to his double century, tried turning Chigumbura down the leg side and the resulting leading edge was taken at mid-on by Gary Brent.
Naumanullah - voted the best batsman of the recently-concluded Quaid-e-Azam Trophy - and Fawad Alam put on 68 for the fourth wicket, to keep the scoreboard ticking. Patron's XI will look for attacking strokeplay from both batsmen in the third day's morning session, and with Shahid Afridi, their captain, yet to bat, the Zimbabweans may be in for further punishment. However, with the pitch expected to deteriorate and take turn, Price might have a say in proceedings.
Faras Ghani is an editorial assistant at Cricinfo