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Football National Challenge Cup Champions Crowned

National Football Challenge Cup came to a thrilling conclusion at Jinnah Stadium in Islamabad on Sunday, May 12, following twelve intense match days of action-packed football.

In the final, WAPDA successfully defended their National Challenge Cup title by defeating the star-studded SA Gardens with a score of 1-0.

The decisive goal came early in the match, with M. Yousaf Ahmed of WAPDA finding the back of the net in the 17th minute after smashing home a deflected freekick by Shayek Dost. SA Gardens fought valiantly, with Murtaza Hussain coming close to equalizing in the game’s dying moments with a volley that narrowly missed the target.

This victory marks WAPDA’s consecutive National Challenge Cup titles, adding to their triumph in 2020 and solidifying their status as a dominant force in national football.

Haroon Malik, the Chairman of the Pakistan Football Federation (PFF), Normalisation Committee graced the final match as the chief guest and presented medals and trophies to the participants.

WAPDA captain, Rao Umer Hayat, was recognized as the Best Player of the tournament, while SA Gardens’ goalkeeper, Salman Ul Haq ‘Kaka’, earned the title of Best Goalkeeper.

Pakistan’s left-winger Shayek Dost of WAPDA claimed the honor of Best Goal-scorer with 8 goals in the tournament, with HEC being awarded the Fair Play Trophy for their sportsmanship throughout the tournament.

The football department of the Pakistan Army won the match against HEC to clinch the bronze medal for third place in the tournament finishing their campaign on a solid note.

Pakistan’s national team training camp is expected to start on May 15 under Stephen Constantine as the Shaheens prepare for the FIFA World Cup Qualifier match against Saudi Arabia on June 6 at the Jinnah Stadium.

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