Awais Zia (75 off 76) and Umar Akmal (136* off 108) starred as Balochistan edged Punjab by six wickets in the opening match of Pakistan Cup 2019.
With 295 to win, Balochistan lost the trio of Zeeshan Ashraf, Asad Shafiq and Bismillah Khan fairly early in the run-chase.
But the duo of Awais Zia and Umar Akmal took the responsibility and constructed a 120-run partnership to carry their side while chasing a decent total on board.
Awais Zia was caught by Hussain Talat off Asghar’s bowling after scoring 76-ball 75 but Umar Akmal, who had an average outing for Pakistan recently, took the charge and helped his side to get over the line.
He was well supported by Fawad Alam (37 off 40) as Balochistan chased down 295 with four overs to spare.
Earlier, after opting to bat first, Punjab lost their top-three batsmen without doing much damage to the opposition.
But Iftikhar Ahmed (54 off 57) and Saad Ali (73 off 86) stitched a 63-run partnership to stable the ship for their side.
Lower down the order, Sohail Tanvir did plenty of damage with his 68 off 59 balls, which consisted of two fours and five sixes before getting dismissed of Amad Butt’s bowling.
Punjab were bowled out for 294 with two balls to spare.
Umar Akmal was adjudged player of the match for his blistering innings.