LAHORE Northern beat Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by seven wickets (DLS method) in the 12th match of the ongoing National T20 Cup at Faisalabad’s Iqbal Stadium on Friday.
In a rain-affected contest, reduced to 16 overs per side, Imad Wasim put Khyber Pakhtunkhwa into bat. The decision paid dividends as a brilliant opening spell by Musa Khan reduced Khyber Pakhtunkhwa to 15 for three in 3.1 overs. Rearguard efforts by Mohammad Rizwan and Iftikhar Ahmed took Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s total to 134 for eight in 16 overs.
Rizwan’s brilliant form with the bat continued as he scored 52 off 35 balls with seven fours. Iftikhar’s 20-ball 31 – which had three sixes and a four – was the other notable contribution. Musa picked up his fourth wicket in the 16th over by removing Rizwan. His figures of four for 38 got him man-of-the-match award.
Northern’s chase got off to a flying start with the opening pair of Umar Amin (39 off 28) and Ali Imran (34 off 23) helping their side to 65 without a loss in seven overs before rain interrupted the play. With the match reduced to 12 overs, the target was revised to 101 and Northern chased it down with three balls spare.
The victory put Northern at the top of the points table with six points, coming from three wins in four matches. Balochistan, with six points from three wins in four matches, are placed second due to a lesser net run rate than Northern. Sindh are third with two wins, while Southern Punjab, Central Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa are fourth, fifth and sixth, respectively, with one win each.
Earlier in the day, Central Punjab and Southern Punjab shared a point each as the 11th match of the National T20 Cup had to be called off due to wet outfield caused by rain in the early morning and afternoon in Faisalabad.
SCORES IN BRIEF:
KHYBER PAKHTUNKHWA: 134-8, 16 overs (Mohammad Rizwan 52, Iftikhar Ahmed 31, Khushdil Shah 22; Musa Khan 4-38)
NORTHERN: 102-3, 11.3 overs (Umar Amin 39, Ali Imran 34; Junaid Khan 2-13).