The brilliant half centuries of openers Zeeshan Ashraf and Shan Masood inspired Southern Punjab to claim an impressive seven-wicket win in the first semi-final of the National T20 Cup for the first XI teams to be played at the Pindi Cricket Stadium. Rawalpindi on Saturday. Hot favorites and defending champions Northern had no answers on Southern Punjab’s outfit which added another chapter to their remarkable tournament comeback history.
NOR v SP | Pakistan National T20 Cup 2020 First Semi-Final Highlights
At the end of the Multan leg, Southern Punjab was at the bottom of the table with six teams with four losses in as many games. After a miraculous win over Sindh at the start of the Rawalpindi leg, the team roared back and crept into the semi-finals after a heroic chase against Balochistan last night, significantly improving the net run rate. help them seal fourth place in the semifinals.
On Saturday night, Captain Shan and Zeeshan Ashraf laid the groundwork for the 161-run chase in southern Punjab, which added 91 runs for the first wicket in just 10.2 overs. The left-handed Zeeshan set the tone of the 62-ball partnership with typically aggressive 55 of 32 balls. It hit four foursomes and as many sixes as the massive bowling attack in the north looking for ways to contain the running river.
Shan hit some big hits after Zeeshan’s departure when the chase hero bumped Sohaib Maqsood in the middle with his captain with 10.4 over 166 runs. The pair added 50 runs with 38 balls before Sohaib fell to Shadab Khan for 16 of 18 balls.
Khushdil Shah (1) was sent to pack by Haris Rauf. Khushdil’s departure left Northern and took 16 runs from the last 17 balls.
Shan took on the responsibility of diligently getting his team to the finish with an unbeaten 78 balls out of 58 (six fours, two sixes) as Southern Punjab finished the chase in 18.4 overs to send the defending champions to pack. The win was the fourth win of the tournament in a row in South Punjab.
Southern Punjab will now compete against the winners of the second semi-final between Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (tonight) in the tournament final on Sunday, which begins at 7:30 p.m. local time at the same location.
Man Of The Match Shan Masood Said:
“I don’t think I deserved the award, Zahid Mahmood bowled really well and Zeeshan Ashraf fought really well. We had a big game just 12 hours after our last game finished. I’m very happy with the team’s performance . We wanted to take care of the players in the tournament and I think we achieved that. We got off to a very bad start as we always conceded more than 200 goals, but we had confidence in our players. We beat a team today that you Eleven can call a full Pakistan, which makes us very happy. We will now try to play in the grand finale tomorrow. “
Previously, Northern had won the litter and decided to hit first. The openers Ali Imran and Zeeshan Malik made their team start 37 runs in 5.2 overs, Zeeshan (16) fell to Mohammad Abbas.
Imran gave real impetus at one end by scoring 50 of 35 balls with four fours and three sixes. The right-hander was one of the three victims of leg spinner Zahid Mahmood. Zahid, who increased his tournament wickets to 11 during this spell, was also responsible for Haider Ali, 18, and Asif Ali, who perished for a golden duck. Zahid finished three for 28 in four overs.
After Imran’s departure, Southern Punjab tightened the screws with some neat coatings. Northern increased the hit rate when Mohammad Ilyas completed 22 runs over bowling on the 18th. Shadab hit him twice in a row, followed by two times in a row.
Shadab and captain Imad Wasim added 56 runs with 41 balls, Imad was run out in the penultimate over for 19 (20 balls).
Shadab scored 48 of 27 balls (four fours, three sixes) to bring his team to their 160, for a total of five in 20 overs.