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Zia, Azam lead FATA's cruise past Peshawar

Mohammad Rizwan top-scored for Lahore with 32 not out PCB/PSL

A 32-ball 50 from Awais Zia led FATA to a six-wicket win against Peshawar in their tournament opener in Rawalpindi. Chasing 165, Zia's blitz helped FATA plunder 93 in the first 10 overs, but they still required captain Hammad Azam's 27-ball 38 to carry them over the line in a tense finish.

Openers Zia and Mukhtar Ahmed (22 off 12 balls) put FATA on course with a 56-run stand off just 24 balls. After Zia's dismissal though, in the 11th over, Peshawar pulled the game back through left-arm spinners Zohaib Khan and Kashif Bhatti, who returned combined figures of 7-0-32-2.

Khushdil Shah struggled with a 29-ball 24, and his dismissal left FATA with 19 runs to win off 15 balls. Azam and Sohail Akhtar needed just eight of them to finish the game.

Musadiq Ahmed had earlier lifted Peshawar to 164 for 6 with his 27-ball 51, an innings that featured five fours and three sixes. Peshawar's top order managed to hit at least a boundary in each over of the Powerplay, but they were reduced to 64 for 3 in the ninth over. Brisk middle-order contributions from Naved Yasin (30) and Mohammed Imran (18) along with Musadiq's firepower helped them hit 100 runs in the final 11 overs of the innings.

In a game that saw 348 runs being scored, fast bowler Mohammad Irfan claimed 2 for 29 to help Islamabad edge hosts Rawalpindi by two runs. Irfan first had opener Ahsan Ali caught and bowled for 4 in the first over and then claimed the key wicket of Fawad Alam in the 16th over. Rawalpindi came close when they needed 18 from the last over but they could score not more than 15 off Rahat Ali.

Earlier, Ralwalpindi required 56 off the last four overs, and though Mohammad Nawaz belted 43 not out off 23 balls, and debutant Nasir Nawaz hit an unbeaten 20 off 12 balls, Rawalpindi came up short.

It was captain and opener Umar Amin who had set up the chase with 56 off 36 balls. He put on 81 with No. 3 Zain Abbas, who wasn't as quick, making 33 off 32 balls. Umar Gul and Raza Hasan picked up a wicket apiece while offspinner Adil Amin conceded only 24 from his four overs.

After being sent in, Islamabad sprinted to 61 for 0 at the end of the Powerplay. Mohammad Asghar then struck with the next ball to get rid of Nauman Anwar for 33 off 17 balls. Faizan Riaz fell for 9 and Saad Ali for 22, but opener Shan Masood brought up a fifty off 35 balls between those two wickets. He marched to 83 off 52 balls with 12 fours and a six overall, before being dismissed in the 18th over, by when Islamabad had reached 160. They managed only 13 off the last two overs of the innings, but it proved just enough in the end.