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Central Punjab thrash Balochistan to win Pakistan Cup

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KARACHI: Tayyab Tahir and Ahmed Shehzad slammed magnificent half-centuries before bowlers displayed a combined bowling effort to power Central Punjab (CP) to down Balochistan by 50 runs and claim the Pakistan Cup title.

Batting first, CP managed to raise 254 in the final before bundling out in the 49th over. In-form batters Tahir and Shehzad led the way for the side as they both scored half-centuries.

Shehzad scored 61 off 87 deliveries with the help of three boundaries and a six and gave his side a solid start before Tahir came to the party.

Tahir then made the most of the decent start provided by the openers and top-scored for his side with a magnificent knock of 71 off 72 balls with the help of five boundaries and two sixes.

Besides Shehzad and Tahir, opening batter Imran Butt (37), skipper Aamer Yamin (34) and all-rounder Usama Mir (30) remained the notable run-getters for CP in the final.

Mohammad Junaid led the bowling attack for Balochistan as he bagged a five-wicket haul for just 56 runs, while Kashif Bhatti bagged two wickets.

Set to chase 255, Balochistan batting line-up failed completely and could score 204 in response despite a magnificent 70-run knock from Bismillah Khan.

The wicketkeeper batter top-scored for his side with a fighting knock of 70 off 77 deliveries including eight boundaries. However, no support from the other end barred Balochistan from sailing through.

Opening batter Imran Butt (30) remained the other notable run-scorer for Balochistan after Bismillah, while the rest of the batters failed to chip in in the run chase and thus, CP clinched the victory and lifted the title.

Ali Shafique picked up three wickets for CP, while Mohammad Ali and Zafar Gohar took two each. Usama, Qasim Akram and Yamin struck out a batter each.

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