Rawalpindi Rams brushed aside Lahore Lions by 47 runs in the first semi-final of the Faysal Bank Super Eight T20 Cup in Faisalabad.
Choosing to bat, Rawalpindi put on 186 for 4, on the back of quickfire half-centuries by Jamal Anwar and Sohail Tanvir. Rawalpindi were in a spot of bother at 66 for 3 in the eighth over, but the pair steered them to an imposing total with a 111-run fourth-wicket stand. Lahore were behind in the chase from the outset, losing wickets regularly to be 96 for 9, before a late blitz from Adnan Rasool carried them to 139. Opening bowler Mohammad Rameez and left arm-spinner Raza Hasan were the pick of the Rawalpindi bowlers, picking up two wickets apiece in tight spells.
In the second semi-final, Karachi Dolphins beat Sialkot Stallions in a high-scoring encounter, setting up the final clash against Rawalpindi on Friday.
Batting first, Karachi lost opener Shahzaib Hasan cheaply. There was no success for the bowlers for a while after that though, as Asad Shafiq and Rameez Raja (2) muscled 164 off 13.3 overs at a run-rate of 12.14. Raja, who was striking at 215.55, fell three short of a hundred, but Shafiq batted through, finishing 91 not out off 55 balls. Set a massive 239 for victory, Sialkot lost a couple early before launching an attack. Going at over ten runs per over for much of the innings, they still fell 42 short. They lost wickets at regular intervals in pursuit of quick runs, and were bowled out for 196 with seven balls to spare. Fast bowler Sohail Khan was easily the best of the bowlers, claiming four Sialkot wickets and conceding just 18 off four overs, while all his team-mates went at over 11 runs an over.