Kolkata Tigers v Lahore Badshahs, ICL, Hyderabad March 28, 2008

Badshahs remain unconquered

Cricinfo staff

Lahore Badshahs 153 for 4 (Raza 48, Taufeeq 41, Latif 30*) beat Kolkata Tigers 131 for 7 (Gavaskar 46*, McMillan 30) by 22 runs

Hasan Raza top scored for the Badshahs with 48 © ICL

Twenty-two runs was the margin of defeat for the Kolkata Tigers; 22 was also the runs conceded by Tigers medium-pacer Abu Nechim in one over.

The Badshahs had been unconquered in five matches so far in the tournament. The Tigers seemed to have them on the mat, but they ended up being tamed. The Badshahs, without captain Inzamam-ul-Haq, were put in to bat by the Tigers and a tight performance from the bowlers left them at only 53 for 2 at the half-way stage.

Taufeeq Umar held together the innings with a 35-ball 41, and his dismissal paved the way for Hasan Raza and Naved Latif to take charge. They didn't disappoint, as 64 runs were scored off the final five overs.

Latif got the momentum going with a six off Upul Chandana in the 16th, before both he and Raza belted a four and a six in the next from Nechim, which went for 22. The same Nechim had been the star for the Tigers on Wednesday, wrecking the Chandigarh Lions' semi-final hopes with his 4 for 27.

Further punishment was inflicted in the 20th over bowled by Nantie Hayward, with Azhar Mahmood - facing his first ball - hitting a six off the final delivery. Raza was run out for 48, while Latif was unbeaten on 30 from 17.

Mahmood struck soon after as the Tigers began their hunt, and when his new-ball partner Mohammad Sami scalped the dangerous Lance Klusener, which was soon followed by Deep Dasgupta's run-out, the Tigers were tottering at 12 for 4.

Despite a run-a-ball 46 from Rohan Gavaskar, and captain Craig McMillan's 30, the Tigers couldn't upstage the Badshahs. They finished at 131 for 7. For the Badshahs, it was an impressive collective bowling effort; of the five bowlers used, offspinner Arshad Khan, playing his first match of the tournament, was the most expensive with 26 coming off his four.

The Badshahs next take on the bottom-placed Ahmedabad Rockets in their final encounter on Sunday, while the Kolkata Tigers take on the Delhi Giants in an important clash to determine a semi-final spot.