By Our Sports Reporter
KARACHI, Jan 3: Opener Jahangir Khan slammed a magnificent 175 as Peshawar scored over run-a-minute in their penultimate round Quaid-i-Azam Trophy match against Karachi Blues at the Asghar Ali Shah Stadium here on Saturday.
Jahangir struck 22 punishing boundaries and a six in his 191-ball knock to help leaders Peshawar finish at 358 for six from a 330-minute opening day's play.
Jahangir, dropped when 48 by Nadeem Khan and then by Rashid Latif shortly after completing his century, notched up his first 50 from 58 balls with seven boundaries, second 50 from 28 balls with eight boundaries, and the final 50 off 85 balls with three boundaries and a six.
Together with fellow opener Asmatullah, Jahangir provided Peshawar a dream 177-run first wicket stand after the visitors had won the toss and elected to bat first on a placid track.
The dominance of the two batsmen can be judged from the fact that the opening 120-minute session yielded 149 runs as Karachi fielders toiled for success and kept running after the ball.
Manzoor Akhtar provided the much needed breakthrough when Shadab Kabir brought off a good catch close to Asmatullah. Asmatullah scored a cautious but impressive 63 that consumed 166 balls and included seven boundaries.
The home team added the wickets of Yasir Hameed (14) and Wajahatullah (18) in quick successions but failed to stop the flow of runs from Jahangir Khan's willow as Peshawar went for tea at 292 for three after adding 113 runs in the second session.
Karachi took a sigh of relief when Jahangir ran out of steam to guide an Ali Husain Rizvi leg-spinner into the hands of Ali Naqvi at first slip. Taimur Khan was the other notable Peshawar batsman. He contributed 43 runs with the aid of five hits to the fence.
All the six Peshawar wickets were equally shared by Karachi spinning trio of Nadeem Khan, Ali Husain Rizvi and Manzoor Akhtar. But Karachi could have been in a much commanding position had the fielders not floored no less than four catching chances.
It was an unfamiliar sight to watch first-class cricket being played in Ramazan. The playing sessions were altered as the first was played between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m., second 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. and the final to 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. It was also uncustomary to watch the players pack up quickly and leave the field to reach their respective places in time for Iftar.
Irrespective of the fact that first-class cricket was played in Ramazan, the turn-out of the spectators was impressive as no less than 1,000 people watched the final two sessions of play.
Day 4: Asif's remarkable 191 helps KCCA Blues to 1st innings lead
KARACHI, Jan 6: Left-handed Test cricketer Asif Mujtaba scored an energy-sapping grand knock of 191 to guide KCCA Blues to points clinching first innings lead over Peshawar in an important Quaid-i-Azam Trophy Grade One match which ended in a draw here on Tuesday at Asghar Ali Shah Stadium where a crowd trouble shortened the last day's play by an hour.
Karachi captain got out shortly after his team had passed 472 mark set by Peshawar in the first innings. He was caught in the slip by Taimur Khan off his counterpart Arshad Khan after a stay of back-breaking 555 minutes at the crease.
Karachi Blues finished its first innings at 480 in the first over after lunch break. Peshawar's second knock came to a premature end at 92 for five when a big fasting crowd became rowdy on advice by the groundsman not to enter the playing area. Some of the spectators, who had come to the ground from nearby locality, allegedly roughed up the groundsman. Former test spinner Iqbal Sikander, who is acting as match referee and umpires Shakil Khan and Islam Khan discussing the situation obtaining at the ground after rowdy scenes, decided to call off the match prematurely about 70 minutes before close of play.
The match had been a personal challenge and success for the diminutive all rounder Asif Mujtaba who carried his responsibilities successfully after getting good support from Azam Khan (74) and wicket keeper Rashid Latif (91).
With Azam Khan Asif Mujtaba put on 154 runs for the fourth wicket stand and later with Rashid Latif he added 195 for 6th wicket stand that brought Karachi close to first innings lead.
Rashid Latif, who will be leading Pakistan in a triangular international competition in Dhaka scored 91. Rashid was unlucky to miss a century, which he so richly deserved.
Asif Mujtaba departed with home team score at 480 for seven. The remaining three home wickets fell at the same score. Sajid Shah finished with four for 120 after and skipper Arshad Khan got three for 121 in 55 overs.