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October 19, 2020

Fakhar, Malik shine as KPK claim National T20 crown

Sports

October 19, 2020

RAWALPINDI: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KPK) decorated their name on the newly introduced National T20 Inter-Provincial Association Trophy with a resounding 10-run win against Southern Punjab in the final at the Pindi Stadium Sunday night.

Following defending champion Northern’s exit in the semis, KPK took over the favourite tag and lived up to that reputation, winning the six-team second edition in an emphatic style.

Fakhar Zaman (67) and Shoaib Malik’s (56 not out) power-packed innings saw KPK hitting a challenging 206 for 4 in 20 overs.

Southern Punjab dreams were then shattered earlier by Shaheen Shah Afridi’s (3-36) with two successive legitimate deliveries blows where he removed captain Shan Masood (7) and dangerous Sohaib Maqsood (0).

From there on it was always looked a difficult proposition for Southern Punjab.

They were served well by Hussain Talat (63) and Kushdi Shah (34).

For a brief period Southern looked threatening but once both departed, it always looked a difficult proposition for them. Mohammad Imran (38 not out) was entertaining with three sixes of the last Usman Shinwari (1-47) over.

Ultimately Southern Punjab could only manage 196 for 8.

It was a story of missed catches and miscalculations by Southern Punjab once against the general tradition of a pressure match, they decided to put KPK into bat first. Fakhar who emerged as the highest run getter (420 runs) in the competition together with Mohammad Rizwan (25) made Shan Masood pay for his decision putting on 76 for the opening wicket in less than ten overs to set a solid platform for a big total. Fakhar continued his good work hammering three sixes and seven fours in his 40-ball innings.

Mohammad Hafeez (38) dropped thrice by Southern Punjab fielders also contributed well in the middle period. It was then left to Shoaib Malik to put icing on the cake with swashbuckling 22-ball innings that was studded with four sixes and three boundaries.

Zahid Mehmood (1-32) was unlucky not to have picked more wickets and yet again he was impressive with his leg spin on a track that had little to offer.

Score: KPK 206 for 4 in 20 overs (Fakhar Zaman 67, Shoaib Malik 56 not out, Mohammad Hafeez 38, Mohammad Rizwan 25, Zahid Mehmood 1-32, Aamer Yamin 1-37)

Southern Punjab 196 for 8 in 20 overs (Hussain Talat 63, Mohammad Imran 38 not out, Khushdil Shah 34, Shaheen Shah Afridi 3-36, Wahab Riaz 3-36)