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Northern claim first win of the tournament, Central Punjab retain top spot
Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2019

Northern claim first win of the tournament, Central Punjab retain top spot

Northern beat Sindh by 145 runs to clinch their first win of the ongoing Quaid-e-Azam Trophy season as the contest between Central Punjab and Balochistan ended in a draw to ensure the former maintained their top spot in the points table.

Meanwhile, Sami Aslam produced a batting masterclass against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to bolster his position as the tournament's leading run-getter.

Northern vs Sindh

Nauman Ali was the hero for Northern in the clash against Sindh as he helped his side jump two slots in the six-team table.

The Northern captain and left-arm spinner registered nine wickets for 109 in the match including exceptional figures of 4-51 in Sindh's second innings.

Northern were buoyed by Faizan Riaz's blistering double century in the first innings to post an imposing total of 408.

In reply, Fawad Alam's century and a crucial contribution of 69 runs from Anwar Ali allowed Sindh to cut the first-innings deficit to 82 runs.

Northern decided to declare with a voluminous lead of 344 after racing to 262-4 in 53 overs following quick runs from Hammad Azam and Nauman on the final day of the game.

Sindh were in trouble early during their chase with the frequent loss of batsmen on the slow Karachi surface.

Sohail Khan offered some resistance with an aggressive 60-ball 54 before becoming the last man to be dismissed as Sindh were all out for 199.

The home side now languish at the bottom of the points table after collecting just three bowling and as many batting points.

Balochistan vs Central Punjab

Bad light marred proceedings on the final day of the match between Balochistan and Central Punjab permitting only 26.3 overs of play.

Solid contributions from Usman Salahuddin (94) and Umar Akmal (78) powered Central Punjab's total to 324-9 in response to Balochistan's 450.

The four-day fixture witnessed 217.2 overs with play repeatedly being called off due to nonideal weather conditions.

A century from Imran Butt and a terrific 87 by Imran Farhat lifted Balochistan to an impressive score in their first innings.

Balochistan skipper Farhat also managed to snaffle two wickets with his part-time spin, dismissing Salahuddin six runs short of his maiden century this season.

Central Punjab gained 10 points in contrast to Balochistan, who got 13 points for their stellar showing in the batting and bowling departments.

Southern Punjab vs Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

Sami Aslam struck an imperious 150 in Southern Punjab's second innings to raise his tally of runs to 833 in seven games during this year's edition of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy.

The left-handed opening batsman heralded his side's batting charge to lead Southern Punjab to 337-5 in 81 overs by the close of play on day four.

Zeeshan Ashraf provided ample support to Sami as he hit a rapid 94 amidst a 165-run stand.

Sami's 254-ball stay at the crease was laced with 15 boundaries and three maximums as he pushed his case for selection in the national side.

For Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Ashfaq Ahmed brought up his eighth first-class century while Zohaib Khan and Rehan Afridi smashed fifties as they racked up 417-5 declared in reply to Southern Punjab's 338 all out.

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's eighth-round match has been shifted to UBL Sports Complex in Karachi owing to rain expected in their home venue of Abbottabad.

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