KARACHI: Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) blasted their way into the semi-finals when they overwhelmed Asia Ghee Mills (AGM) 2-1 in the fourth and final quarter-final of the PFF National Challenge Cup here at the KPT Sports Complex on Sunday.
Zaid Umar put CAA on the front foot when he landed a fine goal in the 13th minute.Their jubilation of taking the lead had not yet subsided when Sajid Ali brought an equaliser for AGM, landing a solid goal in the 15th minute.
At half time the match was evenly poised at 1-1.After the breather, young-blooded CAA kept possession and tried to put pressure on the Bahawalpur-based opponents. And eventually CAA took the decisive lead when Nouman struck on a rebound in the 66th minute because of a goalkeeping blunder.
CAA will now face Pakistan Air Force (PAF) in the semi-final on Tuesday (tomorrow). The first semi-final will be held between debutants Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) and four-time Premier League winners WAPDA on Monday (today).
Both the semi-finals will be held at the KPT Sports Complex. The final will be held on May 10 at the same venue.In the 24-team event mostly new sides progressed to the knock-out stage. This may serve as an eye opener for the well-established departmental sides which invested heavily in their teams but have failed to win after remaining inactive for three years.
Besides PIA, National Bank of Pakistan (NBP), K-Electric, which failed to move beyond the group stage, five-time winners Khan Research Laboratories (KRL) also failed to make it to the quarter-finals when they faced a shock 0-1 defeat in their last group outing against CAA, which is being coached by Pakistan’s experienced coach Siddiq Sheikh.