KARACHI: Test opener Shan Masood hit a solid 100 not out and Sohaib Maqsood blasted 89 to put United Bank Limited (UBL) in the final when they overwhelmed Sui Southern Gas Company (SSGC) by seven wickets in the first semi-final of the National One-day Cup for Departments here at NBP Sports Complex on Thursday.
The two shared 139 for the third wicket to enable UBL to chase the 236-run target in 40.5 overs after losing three wickets.In pursuit of an easy total on a batting-friendly pitch, UBL lost Umar Siddiq (21) and Umar Akmal (12) in quick succession.
Shan and Sohaib played valuable but contrasting innings to take their team home safely.Sohaib, who had two chances, smacked ten fours and two sixes from 94 balls before being stumped by Saifullah Bangash off the bowling of Fawad Alam.
The Multan-born 30-year-old batsman, who has played 26 One-day International, hit left-arm spinner Fawad (1-44) for a huge straight six in the 33rd over. The ball sailed over the boundary wall before falling under the overhead bridge. Sohaib’s third fifty in the event came off 49 balls.
Shan, on the other hand, played a watchful knock, banging 13 fours in his 101-ball unfinished knock. This was the third century for Shan in this event which took his personal tally to 573 at the summit. In List A cricket it was his seventh hundred. He has played 12 Tests for Pakistan.
Left-handed batsman Saad Ali (13*) hit a glorious four off off-spinner Adil Amin to complete the chase for Younis Khan-led side. This was the eighth straight win for UBL in the event. Umar Siddiq got run out as a result of a big mix-up while speedster Ahmed Jamal (1-54) bowled Umar Akmal with a slow ball.
SSGC started their bowling proceedings through off-spinner Adil (0-26) in place of Ahmed Jamal but that did not work.After being invited to bat, SSGC’s top order did well but a collapse meant they were folded for only 235 in 49.1 overs. Left-arm pacer Mir Hamza (2-55) provided an early breakthrough to UBL by sending Umar Amin (0) in his second over. However, Test opener Sami Aslam (57) and Awais Zia (48) added 88 runs for the second wicket.
After the partnership was broken when Sami got run out, SSGC kept losing wickets at regular intervals and were unable to even play the 50 overs.Sami hit nine fours from 63 balls. Awais struck five fours and one six from 61 deliveries.
Asif Zakir chipped in with 58-ball 41 which included two sixes and a couple of fours.Adil made 26-ball 21 with one six and one four. Sameen Gul (2-41), spinner Mohammad Asghar (2-34) and young off-spinner from Karachi Ashiq Ali also got two wickets each.
Ahmed Shahab and Khalid Mehmood Senior supervised the match. Asif Yaqoob was the television umpire, Aley Haider the reserve umpire and Aleem Moosa the match referee. In the second semi-final, WAPDA face Pakistan Television at the same venue on Friday (today).