Islamabad who began superbly by restricting Multan to only 211 for 9 on the first day of their Silver League final match at the Iqbal Stadium in Faisalabad, found themselves in serious trouble at the end of the second day, when they were bowled out for only 180, and conceded a first-innings lead of 31 runs.
When the day began, Islamabad - who were on the receiving end of a battering when this match was originally played some time ago, where Multan scored 514 for 9 declared, and then had Islamabad at 212 for 5 before rain caused an abandonment and subsequent replaying of the game - had the upper hand. They managed to capture the last remaining Multan wicket without an addition to the overnight score, and from there on should have made it count.
Instead, they kept losing wickets, mostly to Kamran Hussain, who picked up four of the top six, and were in danger of being humiliated at 69 for 7. Fortunately for Islamabad, whose top-order had failed en masse, Naeem Anjum, the wicketkeeper, fought back with 67 at No. 8 and was well supported by Rauf Akbar, who made 32. In the end, they mustered 180 from 45.1 overs.
Multan's reply, while not emphatic, was marked by an emphatic 60 from Saeed Anwar Jr., the man who had scored the bulk of the runs in the first innings. Other batsmen struggled and the score was pushed to 125 for 4 at the end of the day. Multan's overall lead was 156, and if they can add more, it might just be enough in this low-scoring final.
The winner of the final gets to be promoted to the first division Gold League circuit of the next season. This match is actually a replay of the Silver League final that was played in Lahore last month. There was no play on the last two days due to rain and the first innings issue remained unresolved. Multan were dominating when the match was called off. Now, they appear to be in the position to return to the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy Gold League Championship, after having been demoted to the Silver League as they had finished at the bottom of the Gold League last season.