Babar, Sajjad drive WAPDA into final
Water and Power Development Authority came back twice from poor starts - first with the ball, then with the bat - against Faisalabad Wolves and strode into the final of President's Silver Cup. The four-wicket win helped WAPDA draw level with Hyderabad Hawks and Wolves on points, but a better run-rate ensured a passage to the final for WAPDA and Hawks.
Needing a win, WAPDA opted to bowl but were frustrated by a strong opening partnership from Wolves. Openers Imran Ali (65 off 95 balls) and Iftikhar Ahmed (88 for 107) added 160 runs, laying a solid foundation for the lower order, but both batsmen were dismissed in quick succession by WAPDA offspinner Iftikhar Ahmed, sparking a remarkable collapse. Zulfiqar Babar struck thrice while Waqas Maqsood and Khalid Usman chipped in with two each as Wolves lost ten wickets for 61 runs, ending their innings on 221.
WAPDA's chase hit rocky waters early as Fahim Ashraf dismissed three of WAPDA's top four to leave the team reeling on 52 for 4. But just like in the first half of the match, WAPDA swung back into the match with a fighting 117-run sixth-wicket stand between Aamer Sajjad and Ayaz Tasawwar. While Tasawwar was dismissed for a 62-ball 52, Sajjad continued to steer the chase and was unbeaten on 92 when WAPDA reached the target, with 20 balls to spare.
The final of the tournament will be played in Lahore on February 8.