BAL vs SP, 2nd Semi-Final, National T20 Cup 2019, 23 Oct 2019

(20 ov)
(20.0 ov)

BAL won by 3 wickets

Balochistan edged past Southern Punjab by three wickets in an exhilarating contest that went right down to the wire.

The fate of the see-sawing clash was sealed by all-rounder Amad Butt, who belted a towering six off the bowling of Umaid Asif as Balochistan required two runs from one delivery to book a spot in the National T20 Cup final.

The equation seemed out of the reach of the Haris Sohail-led Balochistan when Umaid was handed the responsibility to deliver the all-important last over.

Amad then dished out breathtaking strokes to register back-to-back boundaries before launching a six on the fourth ball.

The penultimate delivery saw Umar Gul sacrifice his wicket while trying to give the strike back to Amad.

The 24-year-old made no mistake in hitting the winning runs in style and later was adjudged player of the match for his blistering cameo of 29 from 14 balls.

Balochistan got off a rocky start to their chase of the daunting target of 174 as they lost Imam-ul-Haq and Bismillah Khan cheaply inside three overs.

Senior duo Awais Zia and Imran Farhat fashioned a decent recovery job with a 55-run stand for the third wicket.

The innings was boosted by Hussain Talat's vibrant 29-ball 42, following up on his batting heroics in the previous game against Northern, where he accumulated a fine half-century.

The loss of the Talat in the final stages of the game threatened to halt Balochistan's victory charge but Amad kept them on the right track.

Southern Punjab had benefitted from sublime fifties from Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Hafeez, both of whom could not find a place in the T20I squad recently announced for the Australia tour.

Opening pair Shan Masood and Umar Siddiq did not do much with the bat as Hafeez and Malik set the platform for a big score.

Hafeez churned out 65 crucial runs from 41 balls while Malik sizzled with his supreme batting, contributing 64 in 40 deliveries.

The final will take place in Faisalabad's Iqbal Stadium on Thursday in what is expected to be a full-house.


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