Central Punjab recorded their first victory in
this year’s National T20 Cup against Balochistan thanks to brilliant
performances from Captain Babar Azam and pacer Wahab Riaz at the Pindi Cricket
down the 142-run target for the loss of eight wickets with Babar starring with
65 off 45 balls (eight boundaries and a maximum) to seal the win for his side.
the finishing touches to the innings with 20 off just eight deliveries. He hit
a boundary and two sixes in his knock.
Balochistan, Junaid Khan claimed three wickets for 41 runs in his four-over
spell. He was well supported by Kashif Bhatti and Akif Javed, who picked up two
opting to bat, Balochistan only managed to post 142-7 on the scoreboard in
their allotted 20 overs.
Imam-ul-Haq once again failed to impress as he departed after just scoring
eight. Major contributions came from Kashif Bhatti and Umaid Asif, who scored
27 and 32 respectively.
Punjab, Usman Qadir was the pick among the bowler as he claimed figures of four
for 25 in his four-over spell.
Punjab, this was their sixth win in 17 National T20 matches since 2019-20,
while for Balochistan, it was their 11 loss in 19 matches. While Friday’s
victory helped Central Punjab bounce back from Thursday’s 36-run defeat against
Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, it was second successive defeat for Balochistan which had
suffered a six-wicket defeat against Northern on the opening day.