Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Pentangular Day 3 - Butting in & Attacked by the Danish..

On day 3 of the Pentangular Trophy, Pakistan opener Salman Butt hit a career best 290 to lead Punjab to an imposing total of 599-7 declared, leading Federal Capital by 216 runs. Salman past his previous first class best of 206 and scored at almost run a ball for his 290. What was most astonishing about his innings was the significent percentage of runs hat came from boundaries - he hit FIFTY 4s and a six. He got to his previous first class best in boundaries alone!

He was ably supported by Nasir Jamshed, who continued his amazing form this season with a polished 108. Nasir shared a 290 run 2nd wicket partnership with Salman. Nasir's knock was unlike his swashbuckling ODI innings against Zimbabwe and he took up 180 odd deliveries for his century. I hope that this boy is here to stay and he's not another Nazir or Farhat in the making.

Mohammad Yousuf hit a rapid 56 of as many deliveries with 9 hits to the fence, while Misbah (9) and Kamran Akmal (23) lost their wickets in an effort to score fast. The Capital bowlers led by Shoaib Akhtar were listless for the entire day. Akhtar and Yasir Arafat bowled 18 overs each without any luck, while Sohail Tanvir bowled 25 giving away over a 100 runs and picking up the lone wicket on the previous day.

Federal Capital ended day 3 on 37-3 with the top 3 back in the hut and still 179 behind Punjab with 1 day to go.

In the other game, Sindh turned the tables once more on NWFP and are on their way to victory needing another 179 runs with all their wickets intact.

Resuming their innings on 146-3, only 3 runs behind, NWFP folded for 254, as Pakistan leg spinner Danish Kaneria ran through their middle and lower order with 5 wickets. Danish ended with 5-62 of 25 overs and was well backed up by young pacer Anwar Ali (3-66). NWFP skipper Younis Khan was the only one to put up some resistance scoring 111 with 19 boundaries, before falling to the spin of his counterpart Shahid Afridi.

Chasing 309, the Sindh openers Khurram Manzoor and Khalid Latif batted watchfully to ensure they don't repeat their 1st inning failures. It paid of for them as Sindh ended the day on 130 without losing any wicket. Khurram was unbeaten on 74 and Khalid on 56.

So after a day of turning tables, the favorites Punjab and Sindh are back in the driving seats and look set to end victorious on the final day.

From a Pakistani point of view, the selectors should be pleased to see in-form openers led by Salman Butt and Nasir Jamshed, Khurram Manzoor, and Khalid Latif. Add Hafeez to that mix I think Pakistan has a decent pool to rely on in ODIs and Tests. Yousuf and Younis have also looked in good touch, while Kaneria's form with the ball is a good sign as he has had a below par domestic and international season.

Stay tuned for the final day's results.

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  1. Obaid said...

    Good roundup Q. While this is good cricket, I hope our batsmen dont develop a false sense of confidence, especially before a series with Australia that seems unlikely to occur. My point is that we dont need any more Zahid Fazls, I hope Salman and Nasir can deliver at the international stage as well

  2. Q said...

    Your right Obaid but I think the batsmen know that their playing on almost batting heavens and that the bowling is not of inernational standard.

    Though Salman Butt could argue that he his 290 against an attack that incuded Shoaib Akhtar, Sohail Tanvirm and Yasir Arafat - definitely not Aussie but very much an international quality attack.

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