Naved 179* gives Rawalpindi first win
A round-up of the Gold Cup matches on January 25, 2015
A rollicking hundred from Naved Malik led Rawalpindi Rams to their first win of the tournament, of six wickets against Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited at the National Stadium. ZTBL scored 319 for 9 with the help of Yasir Hameed's 121, but Naved's unbeaten 179 off 140 saw Rawalpindi home with nine balls to spare.
Put in to bat, ZTBL got an opening stand of 60, followed by a second-wicket partnership of 98 between Hameed and Shahid Yousuf (54). Their middle order could not capitalise on the platform laid early on before Sohail Tanvir scored 43 off 26 and Hameed's 11th List A hundred put up a challenging score.
Rawalpindi lost their openers for low scores which brought Naved on the pitch as he unleashed 20 fours and six sixes. He was supported by Usman Saeed's 66 runs in the fourth-wicket stand of 178, before Naved steered them to their target.
Hundreds from Kamran Akmal (134) Sami Aslam (114) gave National Bank of Pakistan a 70-run win against Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited, and kept them on top of the table. National Bank won the toss and piled on 356 for 3 after Nasir Jamshed scored 49 and Kamran and Aslam put on 200 runs for the second wicket. Aslam's hundred was his fourth in List A, while Kamran's 134 off 87 included 16 fours and four sixes.
A few of the SNGPL batsmen got starts but only two went past 50. Mohammad Asghar's three wickets troubled the SNGPL middle order as they approached 150. They slumped from 144 for 2 to 177 for 5 as three of their batsmen were stumped. Opener Azhar Ali scored 57 and No. 6 Mohammad Rizwan's unbeaten 76 off 75 went in vain as they finished on 286 for 7.
A maiden five-for from legspinner Shahzaib Ahmed charged Karachi Dolphins to a massive nine-wicket win against Peshawar Panthers in Karachi. Peshawar were dismissed for 127 and Karachi surpassed that score in 21.2 overs with a 76-ball 98 from Rameez Raja.
Peshawar were asked to bat and got an opening stand of 57 before things went awry. Left-arm spinner Faraz Ahmed and pacer Babar Rehman chipped in with two wickets to complement Shahzaib's five to rattle Peshawar's line-up. They lost their 10 wickets for 70 runs. In reply, Karachi lost one wicket early before Raja and Mohammad Waqas put on 111 for the second wicket, out of which Waqas scored only 21.
Khurram Mazoor's 130 and Mohammad Sami's four wickets helped Port Qasim Authority beat Islamabad Leopards by 42 runs in Hyderabad. Chasing 331, Islamabad were restricted to 288 for 8 after Sami removed their top order.
Port Qasim were put in to bat and were led by a partnership of 157 runs between Manzoor and Umar Amin (80) for the third wicket. Manzoor's second consecutive hundred, and fifth straight 50-plus score, included 13 fours and two sixes which propelled Port Qasim to 330 for 5. Islamabad were 55 for 3 but opener Faizan Riaz resisted with an 89-ball 81, and Imad Wasim (73) and Mohammad Irfan (71 off 43) also chipped in with fifties, but they weren't enough. Islamabad suffered their third loss and are at the bottom of the table.
Fifties from Umar Siddiq and Saad Nasim chased down 182 for Lahore Lions for a nine-wicket win against Karachi Zebras. The Lahore spinners bowled out Karachi for 181 in 49.2 overs, not letting any batsman score a fifty.
Karachi were put in to bat and lost wickets at regular intervals as legspinner Nasim finished with 3 for 44, and left-arm spinner Raza Ali Dar and offspinner Agha Salman picked up two apiece. Lahore lost only one wicket after their opening stand of 45 and Siddiq and Nasim directed them to the target in 37.4 overs.
Khan Research Laboratories continued their dominance in Group II with a six-wicket win, against State Bank of Pakistan with the help of Sadaf Hussain and Nauman Ali. KRL dismissed State Bank for 140 and chased down the target with nearly nine overs to spare to register their third straight win.
The KRL bowlers did not allow any State Bank partnership to flourish as none of their top seven batsmen reached 20. Some lower-order contributions took them past 100 and eventually to 140 as Nauman finished with figures of 7-3-6-3. KRL were in a spot of bother early on, being 50 for 3. But Mohammad Yasin's 37 kept them on track and an unbeaten stand of 70 runs between Saeed Anwar (44*) and Ali Khan (30*) helped them reach their target.