PIA set NBP stiff target

The match between PIA and National Bank is heading for exciting finale after the bankers made a spirited reply in pursuit of a stiff target of 368 in the Patron's Trophy clash at Sheikhupura Stadium Saturday.

According to a message received here, NBP closed the third day on 51 for the loss of Imran Nazir's scalp for 29. They now require another 317 for an improbable win Sunday.

Earlier, PIA made 325 in their second innings having resumed at the overnight score of 81 for one.

Asif Mujtaba, the ex-Test left-hander, scored a solid 87 off 213 balls in 259 minutes. Faisal Iqbal added another 20 to his Friday's score of 36 before he was caught by Inzamam-ul-Haq off Mohammad Sami. But a flurry from the incoming batsmen consolidated PIA's position. Wasim Akram blasted a cavalier 40 off 37 balls with the aid of six fours and one six while dominating a 68-run stand for the ninth wicket with fellow Test all-rounder Azhar Mahmood (33).

Pakistan captain Waqar Younis captured four for 71 in 21 overs. National Bank Mushtaq Ahmed was expensive as he gave away 113 runs in 27.4 overs while taking the wickets of Wasim Akram and Yousuf Youhana (18).