PJL: Basit Ali stars as Bahawalpur beat Mardan to qualify for final

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PJL: Basit Ali stars as Bahawalpur beat Mardan to qualify for final

Basit Ali plays a shot during Bahawalpur Royals Qualifier Two match against Mardan Warriors on Thursday — PCB

LAHORE: Basit Ali starred as Bahawalpur Royals beat Mardan Warriors to qualify for the grand final of the Pakistan Junior League (PJL) here at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore on Thursday.

Bahawalpur Royals will face Gawadar Sharks in the final of the event.

The Royals won the toss and elected to field first, restricting the Warriors to 132 runs before chasing down the target in 14.5 overs.

Basit Ali, who is the tournament’s top-scorer, shined for his side as he smashed 91 runs off 54 balls, laced up with 13 boundaries and four maximums. Basit’s opening partner Shawaiz Irfan was sent back to the pavilion by Mohammad Nabeel after scoring only four runs.

After Shawaiz’s departure, Basit and Mohammad Tayyab Arif (32*) put on a sensational unbroken 117-run partnership to reach the target. The right-hander reached the 300-run mark in the tournament at the end of today’s effort. His run-tally now stands at 344 runs with an average of 68.80 and strike-rate of 150.22.

Earlier, a sensational bowling display by the Royals restricted the Warriors to 132 runs in 20 overs.

After opener George Thomas (17) was sent packing by Arham Nawab, Shahzaib Khan aimed to control things by partnering up with Mohammad Farooq. The two batters amassed 39 runs for the second wicket.

However, Shahzaib was dismissed after scoring 32 runs, while Farooq (24) fell to Obaid Shahid.

Daud Nazar scored 23 runs and Olly Cox gathered 10 runs.

For the Royals, Arham, Obaid, and Mohammad Zeeshan claimed two wickets each, while Sajjad Ali secured a scalp.

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