KATHMANDU, Dec 28: Region No 6 (Baitadi) pulled off a thrilling one-wicket victory in the last ball against Region No 4 (Bhairahawa) on Friday and set up a final clash against Armed Police Force (APF) Club, which thrashed Region No 8 (Pokhara) by 95 runs, in the Pepsi Standard Chartered T20 National Cricket Tournament.
Chasing 110-run target at the TU Cricket Ground, Baitadi was to score seven runs in the last over with two wickets in hand. Mahendra Chand kept his cool but Binod Lama (1 run) lost his wicket in the fourth ball of the last over after falling short to the crease.
In the last ball off Krishna Karki, Chand had to score a run to seal the victory but he top edged the last ball for four. Bibek Chaudhary claimed four wickets and Karki had taken two wickets to trouble Baitadi. Mahendra Chand remained unbeaten with 11 runs off seven balls.
Opener Binod Bhandari scored 20 runs while Prem Tamnag (31 runs), Naresh Budhayer (15 runs), Bhuwan Karik (22 runs) and Santosh Bhatt (10 runs) contributed in the middle order to guide Baitadi close to the target.
Earlier, opener Sagar Pun scored 39 runs to guide Bhairahawa to 109/9 in 20 overs. Fajlur Rahman Khan (14 runs), Krishna Karki (12 runs) and Subash Pradhan (10 runs) were the only other Bhairahawa batsmen to score in double figures. Man-of-the-match Chandra Sawad took four wickets and Binod Lama dismissed two others to restrict Bhairahawa to a low score.
In the first semifinal of the tournament, Pokhara elected to field but APF put up a mammoth 160/3 in 20 overs. APF skipper Paras Khadka remained not out with 51 runs off 29 balls while Sharad Vesawkar added unbeaten 12 runs. Paresh Lohani (20 runs), Subash Khakurel (38 runs) and Basant Regmi (18 runs) were the other major contributors for APF. Rahul BK claimed two wickets while Nischal Pandey took a wicket for Pokhara.
Chasing the good tatal, Pokhara was all out for 65 runs in 17.2 overs as Sanjam Regmi dismissed four Pokhara batsmen and Sharad Vesawkar claimed three wickets. Sunam Gautam took two wickets while Basant Regmi claimed a wicket for APF. Anil Gurung (14 runs) and Rijan Prajoo (10 runs) were the top scorers for Pokhara.
The final match will be played on Saturday at the TU Cricket Ground, Kirtipur.