Ajmal leads Faisalabad into semis
An incisive bowling performance from Faisalabad Wolves, spearheaded by Saeed Ajmal, helped the team defeat Larkana Bulls by 33 runs in Rawalpindi, and reach the semi-finals of the Faysal Bank T20 Cup. Ajmal notched four scalps to wreck Larkana's middle order, and dismiss the team for 88.
The win had seemed unlikely at one stage, as Faisalabad, put in to bat, could only muster 121 from their 20 overs. Khurram Shehzad top-scored with a slow 38, while the likes of Misbah-ul-Haq, Ali Waqas and Asif Ali all fell cheaply. Only four players reached double digits, as the medium-pacer Mohammad Siddiq and offspinner Imtiaz Ali picked up five wickets between them to run through the line-up.
Larkana, however, failed to gather any momentum during their paltry chase, and lost wickets right from the off. Ayaz Jamali was the only batsman to offer some respite, scoring 34 off 36 balls, as no one else contributed more than 11. Ajmal eventually finished with 4 for 14- his best figures in Twenty20 cricket- while Asad Ali chipped in with two wickets to bundle Larkana out in 18.5 overs.
Younis blasted an unbeaten 55 off 33 deliveries with six fours and a six, as Abbotabad chased down 130 with five balls remaining. Medium-pacer Tariq Haroon was the pick of Karachi Zebras' bowlers, finishing with 3 for 14 from his four overs.
Karachi Zebras, choosing to bat, were propelled by a 77-run stand for the third wicket between Hasan Raza and Faisal Iqbal. However from 103 for 2 in the 17th over, the team could only muster their way to 129 for 6 by the end of the 20th, thanks to incisive bowling from Junaid Khan who ended with 3 for 17.