Zia, Hameed take ZTBL to final
Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited 178 for 3 (Hameed 61*, S Yousuf 44*) beat United Bank Limited 143 for 9 (Ahsan 43, Zia 5-31) by 35 runs
A powerful batting performance, highlighted by Yasir Hameed's half-century, was complemented by Junaid Zia's maiden five-for to take Zarai Taraqiati Bank Limited into the final of the Faysal Bank T-20 Cup with a 35-run victory over United Bank Limited in Lahore.
ZTBL enjoyed a flying start and even when Imran Nazir, who had benefited from an outside edge sneaking between wicketkeeper and first slip, fell for 18 their momentum did not slip. Sharjeel Khan celebrated his national call-up by smacking 41 off 26 balls, with four fours and three sixes. But Haris Sohail (7 off 10), the other ZTBL recruit into the Pakistan side, did not have a good outing.
His dismissal brought Hameed and Shahid Yousuf together and their unbeaten 92-run stand, off 50 balls, for the fourth wicket powered ZTBL to a formidable 178. Hameed struck three fours and three sixes on his way to 61 off 46 balls, while Yousuf, who had the same count of boundaries, racked up 44 off 25.
United Bank's chase was promising as they survived the halfway-mark without any casualties. However, Abid Ali and Ahsan Ali's stand of 81 proved to be the only source of resistance. ZTBL struck back with regular wickets and Zia was vital in that regard, picking up two wickets in an over twice. The first instance was in the 13th over when he dismissed Abid for 35 and he did it again in 17th, which all but sealed the game in ZTBL's favour. Ahsan top-scored with 43, but six batsmen were dismissed for single-figures as United Bank barely managed to bat out their 20 overs.