Karachi City Cricket Association overcame Sheikhupura by a comprehensive margin of 79 runs to win the final of the One-day tournament (Associations), played at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore.
Sheikhupura, who went into the final as favourites to lift the trophy after winning all of their 6 matches, including the semi-final against Rawalpindi, went down in the match perhaps a bit to easily, despite Qaiser Abbas' magnificent effort with the bat. With virtually no help coming from the other end, the left-hander only watched his side failing to reach even 200 runs, after being asked to score 279, with the scoreboard showing 106 not out off 134 balls against his name.
It all started when Tanvir Ahmed, the right-arm pace man, bowled Imran Nazir on the very first ball of the innings and his fellow opener Mohammad Javed was caught behind the wicket off Imran Javed in the next over, reducing Sheikhupura to 5 for 2. The rot thus set in reached its climax when they lost the six wickets for 84 in the 19th over.
Qaiser, awarded best batsman of the final, added 34 for the 7th wicket with skipper Aaqib Javed and then went on to add another 63 for the 9th wicket with Kashif Raza (24 off 23 balls), an association during which the left-hander reached his hundred off 126 balls.
Yet all went in vain as their last man Farrukh Majeed holed out a simple catch to mid on off the bowling of Adnan Malik, with the scoreboard showing 199 runs in the 46th over. Adnan, the left-arm spinner, was declared the best bowler of the final after his figures of 3 for 48.
Tanvir Ahmed, Imran Javed and Tabish Nawab also bowled well for their side, getting two wickets each for 23, 46 and 32 respectively. Shahid Afridi got one wicket for 39 in his ten overs.
Earlier, Karachi, led by Moin Khan in Shadab Kabir's absence, won the toss and elected to bat first on a wicket completely devoid of grass. However, Sheikhupura pace attack, led by Aaqib and Kashif Raza bowled brilliantly to reduce them to 12 for 2 by the 5th over, after both Shahid Afridi and Zafar Jadoon threw their wickets away in an attempt to find quick runs.
It was at this juncture that Naumanullah (74 off 96) and Saeed Bin Nasir (49 off 79) joined hands to rescue their side from this vulnerable position. They added 99 for the 3rd wicket to provide a firm foundation for the late order to find some quick runs in the end.
This task was duly taken over by Moin Khan and Arif Mahmood. These two perfectly made for a somewhat tardy start of the innings by executing lusty hits to all parts of the ground, adding 75 in the last 7 overs of which 49 came off the last three.
Moin Khan, who had relied mainly on singles and doubles at the start of his innings, hit 3 fours and 2 sixes to score an unbeaten 67 off 63 balls. Arif, on the other hand, hit five boundaries and a six in his 23-ball innings of 43 not out.
For Sheikhupura, Farrukh Majeed bagged two wickets at the cost of 58 runs, whereas Aaqib Javed, Kashif Raza and Faisal Virk got one wicket each.
Karachi W vs Sheikhupura
One Day Tournament (Associations)
Pakistan Domestic Season