Cheema burst knocks WAPDA off top spot
Pakistan International Airlines seamer Aizaz Cheema sparked an unprecedented collapse that saw Water and Power Development Authority lose by 18 runs, when they were just 24 runs away from victory with five wickets in hand at the Marghzar Cricket Ground in Islamabad. Chasing 326, Sohaib Maqsood and Aamer Sajjad had taken WAPDA to a comfortable 259 for 2. Maqsood was caught and bowled by seamer Kamran Sajid for 103. Cheema then had his first burst of wickets, getting rid of Hasan Adnan and Bilal Khilji for ducks, and then Sajjad for 70. WAPDA lost their last five wickets for five runs, with Cheema getting another three to finish with figures of 6 for 82 in the second innings and 10 wickets in the match. The loss means WAPDA lose top spot in the table, while PIA move up to joint fourth.
Opener Ahmed Shehzad's 94 helped Habib Bank Limited move to the top of the table as they beat Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited by eight wickets at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium. HBL ended the third day on 80 for 1, and needed 101 to win on the final day. They took just 20.4 overs to reach the target with Shehzad, who was on 45 overnight, making an unbeaten 94 of 121 balls to anchor the chase. ZTBL seamer Mohammad Khalil, who is the leading wicket-taker this season, struck early in the day, getting Fahad Masood out caught behind before a run was scored. But Shehzad and Saleem Elahi, who scored 39, took HBL home. The win had been set up by HBL's bowlers when ZTBL were bowled out for 118 on the first day, with Azhar Mahmood picking up five wickets. Shehzad's knock took him to second position in the season's run-charts with 719 at an average of 102.71.
Sialkot picked up nine points as they beat Karachi Blues by nine wickets at the National Stadium in Karachi. Rameez Raja (2)'s century on the third day had kept Karachi in the game after they followed on, but their lower order couldn't do enough to earn a draw on the last day. Sialkot seamers Prince Abbas and Imran Malik, who took six wickets in Karachi's first innings, picked up two wickets each on Tuesday, as the hosts, who were 250 for 4 overnight, were dismissed for 371. That left Sialkot 153 to chase in around half a day. They only needed 27.5 overs as Mohammad Ayub got 84 off 85 balls, which kept him at the top of the season's run charts.
Rawalpindi needed just 13.3 overs on the fourth day to complete an eight-wicket win over Islamabad at the Diamond Club Ground in Islamabad. Islamabad managed to add just six runs to their overnight score of 230 for 9 before Rawalpindi seamer Sadaf Hussain took Islamabad's last wicket, completing his five-for with it. The visitors were left with 50 to win. They got the runs in 10 overs and moved up to joint fourth in the table, while Islamabad stay at third from bottom.
Only two overs were possible on the fourth day at the Iqbal Stadium in Faisalabad as the match between Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited and National Bank of Pakistan ended in a draw. NBP picked up three points for the first-innings lead, keeping them in fourth position. After an action-packed first two days, which saw 20 wickets fall, rain hit Faisalabad and barely any play was possible on the third and fourth day. SNGPL's bowlers had made things interesting by taking four wickets in the 17 overs possible on Monday, leaving NBP 130 ahead with six wickets in hand.