September 24, 2016

Beaconhouse School System, Fahim School System excel in Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket


Pakistan News & Features Services

Beaconhouse School System and Fahim School System registered comprehensive victories over their respective rivals in the Group A matches of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA).

Beaconhouse School System, also the defending champions, won their second successive game by trouncing CAA Model School by 198 runs at the Eastern Ground while Fahim School System overwhelmed Ladybird Grammar School by 60 runs at the KCCA Stadium. 

Batting first, after winning the toss, Beaconhouse School System recovered after an uncertain start to post a healthy total of 254 for nine off 40 overs. 

Half centuries from Man of the Match Fawad Faisal (68 off 61 balls) and Hamza Rizvi (56 off 85 balls) put them in the driving seat after they had slumped to 98 for six despite Muaz Bin Salman’s hurricane 23 off 16 balls. 

Medium-pacer Daniyal Nadeem (2-29) and leg-spinner Umar Shah (2-35) were the pick of the bowlers for CAA Model School. 

Beaconhouse School System dismissed CAA Model School for only 56 in 18 overs to win the match by a staggering margin. Medium-pacers Hamza Tahir (3-21) and Ammar Iqbal (2-15) rocked the top-order and the clean-up job was completed by leg-spinner Muaz Bin Salman (3-12) and left-arm spinner Abdullah Masood (2-10). 

Hasan Masood’s brilliant all-round performance, which earned him Man of the Match award, powered Fahim School System to a convincing victory over Ladybird Grammar School in the other fixture of the day. 

Opening the Fahim School System innings he topscored for with 50 off 57 balls which included five hits to the fence. He dominated the 67-run first wicket stand with Asad Ehsan who made 20 off 41 balls. 

The momentum was sustained by Saadi Ahmed (28 off 31 balls) which took the score to 91 for the loss of only one wicket near the halfway stage of their innings. But they lost their last seven wickets for only 26 runs to be bowled out for 158 in 35.4 overs. 

Ladybird Grammar School fought back through some disciplined bowling from left-arm seamer Abdul Rafay (3-25), who was supported by left-arm spinner Amanullah (3-41) and medium-pacer Subhan Ahmed (2-11). 

Chasing a target of 159 in 40 overs, Ladybird Grammar School was in with a great chance of winning the match when were 76 for two. But the complexion of the game changed with the dismissal of Amanullah who struck nine boundaries in his 36-ball 48. 

Fahim School System’s spin duo of Hasan Masood (4-14) and Ahsan Ali (3-19) demolished the lower order as the last eight wickets crashed for only 23 runs and Ladybird Grammar School was all out for 99 in 21.1 overs.

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September 23, 2016

Khafiz Ali spins Ebrahim Ali Bhai School to emphatic victory in Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket


Pakistan News & Features Services 

Left-arm spinner Khafiz Ali, with a sensational five-wicket haul, bowled Ebrahim Ali Bhai School to an emphatic 105-run victory over Karachi Public School in their Group F encounter of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA), at the Eastern Star Ground in Karachi.

Khafiz Ali turned the match decisively with his spell of 4.2 overs in which he captured five wickets for only a couple of runs as Karachi Public School crashed from 75 for three to 93 all out. He was declared Man of the Match for his outstanding bowling effort.

Put into bat, Ebrahim Ali Bhai School was provided a flying start by the opening pair of Asad Amin (24 off 31 balls) and Kashif Khan (20 off 29 balls) as they added 48 for the first wicket. 

The exhilarating 58-run fifth wicket partnership between Usman Shah (54 off 48 balls) and Aqeel Ahmed Shah (27 off 32 balls) put them in the driving seat before the spin duo of Ahmed Farooq (5-19) and Abdul Waris (4-36) caused a middle-order collapse. 

Ebrahim Ali Bhai School regained control through the ninth wicket pair of Asif Khan (15 off 27 balls) and Abdul Rahman (13 off 15 balls) put on 38 priceless runs in testing conditions to take the total to 198. 

Set a challenging target of 199 in 40 overs, Karachi Public School recovered after losing a couple of wickets cheaply. The 47-run third wicket partnership between opener Ishaq Ali (22 off 50 balls) and Ahmed Farooq (15 off 40 balls) kept him in the hunt but the momentum was surrendered with the introduction of left-arm spinner Khafiz Ali, who proved literally unplayable. 

By routing their opponents for a paltry 93 in 29.4 overs, Ebrahim Ali Bhai School won the match by a handsome margin of 105 runs.

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September 22, 2016

City School, New Standard School victorious in Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket


Pakistan News & Features Services

The City School and New Standard Secondary School emerged triumphant over their respective rivals in the Group H matches of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA).

Hurair Butt’s brilliant all-round effort helped The City School overpower Falconhouse Grammar School by nine wickets at the TMC Ground while opener K M Nafy guided New Standard Secondary School to three-wicket victory over Kamran Public School at the Eastern Star Ground. 

The City School bowled out Falconhouse Grammar School, who batted first after winning the toss, for 157 in 37 overs with medium-pacer Hurair Butt (3-26), adjudged Man of the Match, being the pick of the bowlers. 

Coming into bat at number eight, with Falconhouse Grammar School in disarray at 93 for six, Abdullah Ejaz counterattacked with purpose, hitting three fours in his 29 off 26 balls, adding 37 for the eighth wicket with Mohammad Muneeb, who remained undefeated on 17 off 21 balls. 

Earlier opener Mohammad Ali made a patient 26 off 57 balls. The target of 158 in 40 overs didn’t test The City School batsmen, as the 111-run unbroken stand for the second wicket between opener Zarar Shah (60 off 38 balls) and Hurair Butt (62 off 39 balls) saw them home with as many as nine wickets and 24.3 overs in hand. 

The other match of the day, between New Standard Secondary School and Kamran Public School, turned out to be more absorbing one. 

Electing to bat first, after calling correctly, Kamran Public School was all out for 144 on the penultimate ball of its innings. Four of their batsmen, Anas Ilyas (26 off 33 balls), Obaidullah (26 off 44 balls), Saif-ul-Haq (21 off 25 balls) and Hashir Ansari (20 off 25 balls) got off to starts but neither of them could turn it into a big score. 

They were derailed by the left-arm spinning duo of Mohammad Tariq (3-24) and Mohammad Taha (2-24) while medium-pacer Mohammad Junaid (2-44) cleaned the tail. 

New Standard Secondary School made a heavy weather of its target 145 in 40 overs, losing wickets at regular intervals after opener K M Nafy, named Man of the Match, had put them in the driving seat by scoring 74 off 55 balls with the help of two sixes and 10 fours. 

Kamran Public School staged a comeback into the game through off-spinner Usama Adnan (4-24) as New Standard Secondary School, who collapsed from 109 for two to 140 for seven, was made to fight until the end. They got over the line with 19 overs to spare.

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September 21, 2016

Irfan Rahmat, Saim Ayub shine in Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket


Pakistan News & Features Services

Irfan Rahmat’s fine all-round performance guided Aga Khan Secondary School to a thrilling three-wicket victory over B M Grammar School while Saim Ayub’s century helped Springfield Academy overwhelm Hira Foundation School by 227 runs in the Group E matches of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA).

Batting first, after winning the toss at the KCCA Stadium, B M Grammar School was bowled out for 131 in 34.2 overs by Aga Khan Secondary School, who reached the target of 132 in 20.3 overs after losing seven wickets. 

Irfan Rahmat, declared Man of the Match, played the lead role in Aga Khan Secondary School’s win in the low-scoring fixture. Alongwith fellow off-spinner Safiullah, who returned the impressive figures of 4 for 12, he demolished B M Grammar School’s batting with his medium pace, claiming three wickets for 20 runs. 

Despite the contribution of 37 extras, which included 35 wides, B M Grammar School was all out for 131. Opener Umar Siddiqui, who was run out for 32 off 80 balls, was the only batsman to offer resistance to the deadly spin-cum-pace bowling attack. 

B M Grammar School, however, fought back through the spin duo of Asfandyar Ghani (4-20) and Bilal Kamran (2-37) to keep the contest alive while defending a low score. It was Irfan Rahmat’s unbeaten 32 off 47 balls which saw Aga Khan Secondary School through after they had lost seven wickets with 27 runs still needed for victory. 

It was a different story to relate in the other game of the day in which Springfield Academy hammered Hira Foundation School by 227runs at the TMC Ground. 

Opener Saim Ayub’s magnificent knock of 130 off 95 balls, containing 16 boundaries, allowed Springfield Academy, having been put into bat, post a mammoth total of 328 in the allotted 40 overs. He added 90 for the second wicket with Ali Nasim, who contributed 58 off 42 balls with the help of five boundaries. 

Mubashir Amin (24 off 31 balls) and Ehtisham Elahi (27 off 17 balls) kept the scoreboard moving and Springfield Academy was able to compile a huge score despite the loss of quick wickets near the end of its innings. There were two wickets each for the quartet of Asad Ali, Rahmanullah, Murtaza Ahmed and Zohaib Khan. 

Set a stiff target of 329 in 40 overs, Hira Foundation School wilted under the scoreboard pressure to be routed for 102 in 20.1 overs despite opener Zain carrying his bat through the innings, scoring an unbeaten 45 off 69 balls. 

Medium-pacer Mohammad Bilal (3-9) and left-arm spinner Badar Qureshi (3-15) were the standout bowlers for Springfield Academy whose opener Saim Ayub was adjudged Man of the Match.

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September 16, 2016

Youth development holds key to US cricket future: Naeem-ul-Haq


By Syed Khalid Mahmood
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

Cricket has certainly come alive in a big way in the United States of America (USA) with back-to-back Twenty20 Internationals between the West Indies and India, staged at the Central Broward Regional Park in Lauderhill, Florida, in August..

The All-Star series and the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) had paved the way for the return of international cricket in the USA but the recent series between the West Indies and India seemed to have done enough to ensure a future for the sport in the country. 

The monumental success of these two matches appears to have gladdened the hearts of the entire cricket community in America in general and they are looking forward to capitalizing on this fever. 

Naeem-ul-Haq, a former cricketer and now a qualified coach, has always been optimistic about the future of the game in his adopted country despite all the challenges. 

Having started his career in his hometown Karachi, where he played first-class cricket for his employers Pakistan Customs before relocating in USA, he has believed that better results could be accomplished if the organizational matters were taken care of professionally and there was greater emphasis on the youth development programmes.

In an interview, Naeem-ul-Haq, who worked as one of the coaches of the United States of America Cricket Association (USACA), reckoned that engaging the youngsters was the best way forward for the further development of cricket. 

“There are a few organizations dedicated to introducing cricket to American children as they look to support local youth cricket by sharing funding, printed and digital resources, and best practices. They also have a network of dedicated volunteers who give their time, energy and money to bring cricket to schools,” the former coach of the South East of the USACA, covering the states of Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina, remarked. 

Naeem-ul-Haq, who has been associated with the Global Sports, a non-profit organization incorporated in the state of Michigan, revealed that the inaugural Youth Diversity Cup, which is going to be the first tournament of its kind in the USA, was due to be launched next summer. 

“We have worked out a plan to organize the Youth Diversity Cup on the sidelines of the Diversity Cup, which is an established annual tournament, next July. The event will add value to the local communities by promoting an active lifestyle for all children through the playing of cricket,” he added.

Naeem-ul-Haq further disclosed that, as part of their training programmes, the Global Sports had organized a coaching certification course a couple months ago in Michigan. 

“There were a dozen participants in the Level-1 certification for cricket coaches, conducted by Jalaluddin, Level-4 coach certified by the ECB and a former Test cricketer from Pakistan. The coaches learnt basic skills to teach the game of cricket to upcoming cricketers,” he informed. 

While Naeem-ul-Haq welcomed the initiatives of playing international matches in America in order to explore new areas, and promote cricket besides the hosting of the CPL 2016 and the All-Star series between Sachin Tendulkar’s Blasters and Shane Warne’s Warriors in 2015, he insisted that the youth development held the key to the future of cricket in USA. 

“The Americans indeed wish to see cricket, especially T20, which is not too dissimilar to baseball, which is one of the most popular sports in the region. But the purpose will not be fully served until a sizeable chunk of their youth turns to cricket,” he concluded.

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September 12, 2016

Ramil Aftab, Hamza Ali star in KG Schoolboys victory in Omar Trophy


Pakistan News & Features Services

Ramil Aftab’s century and Hamza Ali Khan’s five-wicket haul powered Karachi Gymkhana Schoolboys to an emphatic 165-run victory over Foundation Public School in their Group G encounter of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA), at the Karachi Gymkhana Cricket Ground on September 11.

Batting first, after winning the toss, Karachi Gymkhana Schoolboys posted a mammoth total of 291 for eight in the allotted 40 overs. Foundation Public School, in reply, was bowled out for 126 in 26 overs. 

Karachi Gymkhana Schoolboys’ opener Ramil Aftab whacked three sixes and six fours in his 100 off 101 balls, dominating 147-run second wicket partnership with Shaharyar Zaidi who stroked six boundaries in his 66 off 60 balls. 

Leg-spinners Mohammad Maisam (2-42) and Osama Khan (2-75) were the successful bowlers for Foundation Public School but Hamza Obaid remained undefeated on 44 off 42 balls with the help of two fours to stretch the total past 290. 

Set a stiff target of 292 in 40 overs, Foundation Public School lost both the openers cheaply. The ship was steadied by Osama Khan (38 off 60 balls) and Mohammad Abbas (36 off 36 balls) who added 85 for the third wicket. 

Karachi Gymkhana Schoolboys sealed the fate of the match through off-spinner Hamzi Ali Khan’s sensational spell of eight overs in which he claimed five wickets for only 20 runs. Fellow off-spinner Aurangzeb also chipped in with a couple of scalps as Foundation Public School lost their last wickets for 27 runs to be bowled out for 126. 

The Man of the Match award, however, was clinched by opener Ramil Aftab of Karachi Gymkhana Schoolboys for his wonderful century.

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September 9, 2016

Khan Secondary School, The Educators School off to winning start in Omar Trophy


Pakistan News & Features Services

Khan Secondary School recorded a thrilling one-wicket victory over Al Fatima Academy while The Educators School overwhelmed Oasis English School by six wickets in the latest matches of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA).

The low-scoring encounter between Khan Secondary School and Al Fatima Academy turned out to be a cliff-hanger at the Hussain Lawai Naya Nazimabad Stadium in which 19 wickets fell for 253 runs in 62.4 overs. 

Put into bat, Al Fatima Academy recovered to reach 126 in 29.3 overs after being 74 for six. Kafeel Khan struck one six and six fours in his 39 off as many balls while Mohammad Ali chipped in with 24 off 33 balls. 

Khan Secondary School’s spin duo of Majid Aslam (3-15) and Tahir Bahadur (3-22) sustained the pressure after medium-pacer Aamir Farooq (2-25) had troubled the top-order. 

The target of 127 in 40 overs didn’t look a stiff one and the breezy knock from Man of the Match Aman Khan (42 off 33 balls) put Khan Secondary School in the driving seat. 

But Al Fatima Academy fought back gallantly through the off-spinning duo of Hasnain Razzaq (4-29) and Fahad Ali (2-21) to keep the contest alive until the last pair completed the job. In the other match of the day, 

Oasis English School was bowled out for 160 by The Educators School at the Eastern Star Ground. Batting first, after winning the toss, 

Oasis English School was given a flying start by openers Mohammad Sabir (39 off 49 balls) and Mohammad Kashan (25 off 36 balls) as they added 69 for the first wicket. Talha Ahsan (30 off 62 balls) then anchored the innings but the fall of wickets in rapid succession didn’t help their cause. 

The spin trio of Uzair Ali (3-12), Sameer Ahmed (3-23) and Zohaib Masood (2-33) pulled it back for The Educators School with some intelligent bowling. 

Opener Mubashir Nawaz, who stroked 11 boundaries in his unbeaten 77 off 87 balls, guided The Educators School to a comfortable six-wicket victory as the winning runs came with 11.2 overs to spare. He was adjudged Man of the Match, having dominated the 132-run second wicket partnership with Taha Mahmood (40 off 51 balls) to seal the fate of the match. Off-spinner Abdul Rafay’s three-wicket haul was not enough to change the course of the proceedings.

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September 8, 2016

Victories for Qamar-e-Bani Hashim School, Qadri Model School in Omar Trophy


Pakistan News & Features Services

Mohammad Hussain’s terrific all-round performance powered Qamar-e-Bani Hashim School to a stunning 237-run triumph over Zeeshan Secondary School while Syed Yawar Imam and Saad Bin Yousuf spun Qadri Model School to 44-run victory over St Paul English School rivals in the Group C matches of the Omar Trophy Inter-School Cricket Tournament 2016, being organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA).

Batting first, after winning the toss at the Eastern Star Ground, Qamar-e-Bani Hashim School overcame a shaky start to post a mammoth total of 326 in 38.5 overs before bowling out Zeeshan Secondary School for only 89 in 17 overs. 

Opener Mohammad Hussain led the carnage with 89 off 66 balls, cracking one a six and 12 fours, after three wickets had gone down for 29. 

He added 155 for the fourth wicket with Mohammad Haider, who struck 11 boundaries in his 64 off 59 balls. 

Kazim Hussain’s 50 off 47 balls sustained the momentum while the late flourish was provided by Ali Akbar’s 36 off 19 balls containing one six and five fours. The contribution of 49 extras also helped in boosting the Qamar-e-Bani Hashim School total. 

The score could have been even higher without the wicket-taking acts of medium-pacers Waleed Khan (4-58) and Mohammad Faizan (2-63) while off-spinner Mohammad Muneeb (2-39) was also the most economical bowler of the innings. 

Set to score 327 in 40 overs, Zeeshan Secondary School crashed to 89 all out after being 57 for two. Opener Mohammad Ashar (23 off 24 balls) and Mohammad Bilal (14 off 18 balls) were the only batsmen to enter double figures as the innings was wrecked by the off-spin of Mohammad Hussain (4-21) who was assisted by off-spinner Haider Zaidi (2-11) and medium-pacer Rehan Abbas (2-14). 

Mohammad Hussain of Qamar-e-Bani Hashim School was the unanimous choice for Man of the Match award for his superb all-round effort. In the day’s other game Qadri Model School, batting first after calling correctly, was bowled out for 176 in 36.4 overs at the KCCA Stadium but they defended it successfully by routing St Paul English School for 132 in 35.1 overs. 

Opener S M Shaheer (49 off 58 balls) provided a flying start to Qadri Model School but they lost their way in the middle overs due to the fine bowling from the spin trio of Izhan Ahmed (4-30), Suhain Sameer (2-30) and Mustafa Siddiqui (2-37). 

Chasing a target of 177 in 40 overs, St Paul English School was put in the driving seat by opener Abdullah (47 off 87 balls) but he didn’t receive support from fellow students who were clueless against the spinners. 

They collapsed from 91 for two to 130 all out to lose the game after controlling it for a while. Leg-spinner Saad Bin Yousuf (4-27) was the most successful of the Qadri Model School bowlers while off-spinner Syed Yawar Imam who turned the game around with his spell of three for 14 off 6.4 overs was adjudicated as Man of the Match.

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