Habib Bank Limited (HBL), lifted the National Bank of Pakistan (NBP) one day Cricket Cup, defeating Khan Research Labs (KRL) by 19 runs, in an exciting finish at the Gaddafi Stadium Lahore on Thursday.
The KRL Captain Nadeem Abbasi (a former test player) won the toss and invited HBL to bat first on warm sunny late spring day at Lahore. Led by the former Pakistan Captain Saleem Malik, HBL were all out for a modest total of 182 runs. Hasan Raza who had at one time created the record of being the youngest test player in the game, was the top scorer with 57. Incidently, the two former stars of Pakistan, Saleem Malik and Ijaz Ahmed were out for a duck each. With 4 wickets for 31, Yasir Arafat was the most successful bowler for KRL.
In reply, the KRL were bundled out for 163 runs in 47.5 overs. Imran Farhat, an upcoming leg spinner had caused the rout by claiming 4 wickets for 57 runs. Naseer Ahmed was the highest scorer with 41.
HBL, one of the leading teams in the tournament thus clinched the trophy. The tournament sponsored and organised by the National Bank of Pakistan having offered attractive prize money as well as other awards, was participated by the best teams in Pakistan's domestic cricket.
Chairman PCB Lt. Gen. Tauqir Zia was the Chief Guest, who in the company of NBP President Mian Mohammad Soomro awarded the Championship Trophy and a cheque of Rs.100,000 to the HBL Skipper Saleem Malik, while the KRL Skipper Nadeem Abbasi received the Runners-Up prize of Rs. 50,000. Imran Farhat, deservedly, won the Man of the Match award.
Among the other players, Iftikhar Hussain (KRL) won the best batsman of the tournament award for scoring 497 runs while Fazl-e-Akbar of Customs, was declared the best bowler of the tourney with 19 wickets. Taufeeq Umer (HBL) and Aamer Iqbal (Customs) were declared the best fielder and the best wicket keeper respectively. Each one of the players received a cash award of Rs. 5000.