June 24, 2014

Naya Nazimabad Peace Cup to offer bigger cash rewards


By Syed Khalid Mahmood
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

The prizemoney of the 2nd Peace Cup Ramazan Festival Cricket Tournament 2014, due to get underway under floodlights at the Lawai Cricket Stadium in Naya Nazimabad, Karachi, later in the week, has been enhanced substantially.

It was announced that the total prize money of the Peace Cup has now been raised to Rs 700,000 with the winners to collect a purse of Rs 400,000 and the runners-up to receive Rs 200,000. 

Arif Habib, Chairman, Arif Habib Group, having masterminded the development of a cricket stadium of international standard in the massive 2,100-acre housing scheme in the northern area of the city, shared the details of the mega project during a media briefing at the Karachi Gymkhana on June 23. 

He dispelled the impression that security was an issue while playing or commuting at the Lawai Stadium which will now be playing host to the second edition of the Peace Cup, after a successful launch last year. 

“Security is not area-specific issue. Living in DHA, I visit the ground almost every Sunday to play cricket matches. The management and staff of the Naya Nazimabad go there on a daily basis. The area is as safe as any other locality of Karachi ,” he reckoned. 

Arif Habib, himself an enthusiastic cricketer, disclosed that following the completion of the cricket stadium, now construction work has commenced on the development of grounds for hockey and football besides a club house, which will have facilities for indoor games. 

“The participants of the 2nd Peace Cup will find many new features at the Lawai Stadium which houses dressing rooms besides dugouts. The third-umpire room, sightscreens, auto rollers and auto cutting machines are now also there while the pitches have recently been re-laid,” he added. 

Responding to a question, Mohammad Iqbal, Director Sports, Naya Nazimabad, informed the media that they were awaiting action from Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) who have been requested to allocate them some matches during the upcoming 2014-15 cricket season at the Lawai Stadium. 

“The PCB committee had visited the Lawai Stadium and they agreed that it’s equipped with the modern paraphernalia amd merited consideration for being used as a venue for the national tournaments in the coming season,” he added. 

“Located in the vicinity of the populous North Nazimabad, our stadium seems to be having all the ingredients of becoming a venue for first-class matches as well as limited overs games under floodlights,” Iqbal felt. 

Test umpire Mr Riazuddin unveiled the technical aspects of the tournament while Samad A Habib, CEO, Javedan Corporation Ltd, Ali Rahim, President, Karachi Gymkhana, and Nadeem Omar, Managing Director, Omar Associates, and former cricketers, Anwar-ul-Haq, Babar Basharat, Sajid Abbasi and Zaheer Ahmed were prominent among those present on the occasion. 

As many as seven teams, United Sports Club, Faisalabad Wolves Star Cricket Club, Bank Islami, Vital Five Academy, Haidery Traders, Azad Pak Ltd and Royal Cricket Club will be making their debut in the 2nd Peace Cup. 

Defending champions Omar Associates, last year’s runners-up Qasmi Cricket Club, Alamgir Gymkhana, Travels Cricket Club Afghanistan, Sony Associates, Eaton Cricket Club, BYI Cricket Club, Advance Telecom and Brothers Cricket Club Dadu will be the other participating outfits in the tournament due to commence a couple of days before the start of the holy month.

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June 21, 2014

Omar Associates sponsor Karachi Gymkhana’s Ramazan Cricket Festival 2014


By Syed Khalid Mahmoof
(Pakistan News & Features Services)

A record prizemoney of over Rupees one million will be disbursed in the 29th edition of the Karachi Gymkhana Omar Associates Ramazan Festival Twenty20 Cricket Tournament 2014 which will be getting underway on the first day of the holy month.

The details about the tournament, having pioneered the concept of T20 cricket in the country, was unveiled in a media briefing by Nadeem Omar, Managing Director, Omar Associates, and Ali Rahim, President, Karachi Gymkhana, here at the Gymkhana’s Banquet Hall on June 21.

The winners will be receiving a purse of Rs five lacs while the runners-up will be collecting Rs two and a half lacs and the semifinalists will be getting Rs 50,000 each. There will be individual cash awards of more than Rs two lacs on offer as well.

Nadeem Omar, in his brief speech, pointed out that the Ramazan cricket tournaments of the city have led to the revival of international career of quite a few fringe players like fast bowler Mohammad Irfan and opening batsman Nasir Jamshed, both of whom came back in the reckoning with strong performances.

Mian Shaukat Hussain, who conducted the proceedings, remarked that the Karachi Gymkhana Ramazan tourney has set very high standards to be recognized as the most prestigious of all such events held in the metropolis.

Test umpire Riazuddin spoke about the technical aspects of the tournament, emphasizing that points will be shared in case of non-completion of league matches although the organizing committee reserved the right to amend the rule.

The family of Shabbir Hussain, the deceased former cricketer who coached the Gymkhana members for a long time, will be presented a handsome purse at the end of the tournament. A fund for this purpose has been created and substantial donations were pledged on the spot by Nadeem Omar, Altaf Agha and Iqbal Umar.

Meanwhile, a total of 16 teams, divided equally in four groups, will be entering the competition. Top two teams from each of the four groups will qualify for the knockout phase starting with quarter-finals.

For the first time in its 29-year-old history the sponsors of the tournament, Omar Associates, will also be the defending champions.

The draws of the tournament, having been taken out in the presence of the officials of the participating teams and the tournament officials at the Gymkhana’s cricket ground a few days ago, were also released on the occasion.

Holders and sponsors Omar Associates have been drawn in the Group A alongwith Qasmi Cricket Club, Karachi Gymkhana Academy and Brothers Cricket Club Dadu while the Group B comprises of Mohammad Hussain Cricket Club, Karachi Gymkhana, Sony Associates and Eaton Cricket Club.

The Group C contains Tapal Cricket Club, Bank Islami, K-Electric and Vital Five Cricket Club while the Group F features Heroes Cricket Club, Dubai Islamic Bank, Advance Telecom and Shabo Stars Cricket Club.

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Jaffer Qureshi’s century makes Omar Associates national senior champions


Pakistan News &; Features Services

Omar Associates, Karachi, won the 16th PVCA National Seniors Cup tournament by overpowering Golden Eagles, Lahore, by five wickets in the day/night final staged at the EME DHA Cricket Ground in Lahore.

This was the first triumph of Omar Associates in this tournament as they had earlier lost the national final in 2012. The Pakistan Veterans Crickets Association (PVCA) has now successfully organized 16 editions of the National Senior Cup in as many years.

Put into bat, Golden Eagles posted a respectable total of 218 runs for loss of nine wickets in the allotted 30 overs. Former Test batsman Shahid Anwar (48 off 46 balls), Bakhtiar Hussain (36 off 37 balls) and Nadeem Farooqi (30 off 24 balls) were their leading scorers as the wickets were shared between off-spinner Iqbal Shaikh (3-36) and left-arm spinner Jaffar Qureshi (2-48).

Omar Associates batting second under floodlights reached the winning target of 219 runs in 28 overs for the loss of five wickets. Skipper Jaffer Qureshi and former Pakistan opener Sajid Ali put an opening partnership of 82 runs.

Sajid perished after scoring (27 off 27 balls) but the left-handed Jaffer scored a brilliant match-winning hundred. His sensational knock of 118 came from 78 balls and it contained eight towering sixes and as many fours. He was given a standing ovation by the sizeable crowd upon reaching his century.

Nadeem Sheikh scored 40 off 28 balls as Omar Associates romped home comfortably. For Golden Eagles, former Pakistan off-spinner, Sajjid Akbar, took a couple of wickets for 42 runs.

The prize distribution ceremony was held soon after the conclusion of the final. Fawad Ijaz Khan, Chairman, PVCA, and Ashiq Hussain Qureshi, Chief Executive, PVCA informed the gathering about the activities of the association.

Test Cricketer Mohammad Hafeez, who was the chief guest, presented the winners trophy and cash prize of Rs 150,000 to skipper Jaffer Qureshi of Omar Associates while the runners-up trophy and cash award of Rs 75,000 was collected by Mohammad Salman of Golden Eagles. Jaffer Qureshi was also adjudged named Man of the Match in the final.

Nadeem Omar, Managing Director, Omar Associates, announced a bonus of Rs 100,000 for his team on winning the tournament. Among those present in the prize distribution ceremony were Intikhab Alam, former Pakistan captain, and Col (Rtd) Rafi Nasim, ex-Secretary, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). 

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June 11, 2014

Golden Eagles edge out Chaudhary Sports in National Seniors regional final


Pakistan News &; Features Services

Golden Eagles emerged as the Punjab champions by edging out Chaudhary Sports by one wicket in the regional final of the 16th PVCA National Seniors Cup Cricket Tournament 2014 at the Shah Faisal Ground, Lahore, on June 10.

It turned out to be a very thrilling encounter which went to the wire. Put into bat, Chaudhary Sports scored 193 for nine in the allotted 30 overs. Golden Eagles overcame tense moments to as the last pair scored the winning run with just a couple of deliveries remaining.

Golden Eagles will now be making their maiden appearance in the national final, due to be held at Lahore later this month, in which they will be taking on the southern region champions, Omar Associates.

A breezy knock of 61, containing five sixes and two fours, from skipper Chaudhary Shafqat Hussain allowed Chaudhary Sports to reach a fighting total of 193 for nine in 30 overs. Mohammad Sami (24), Mohammad Naeem (22), Kashif Latif (18) and Raza Khan (15) also contributed their bit as the wickets were shared between Akbar Khan (2-30), Shahid Anwar (2-40), Sajjad Akbar (1-39), Javed Hayat (1-44) and Tajamul Chaudhary (1-47)

In reply, Golden Ealges made 194 for nine in 29.4 overs with Nadeem Farooqi (46), Bukhtiar Hussain (33), Akbar Khan (28 not out), Naseer-ur-Hassan (17), Shahid Anwar (16), Javed Hayat (16) and Sajjad Akbar (16) making substantial contributions as the bowling honours were shared by Khalid Habib (2-19), Mohammad Asif (2-23), Raza Khan (2-34) and Mohammad Khan (2-38).

The prize distribution ceremony was held soon after the conclusion of the final in which former Pakistan captain and Director Domestic Cricket, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Intikhab Alam, was the chief guest. Nawab Ashiq Hussain Qureshi, Chief Executive Officer, Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA) was also present on the occasion.

Intikhab Alam presented the winners’ trophy alongwith a purse of Rupees one lac to the Golden Eagles skipper, Mohammad Salman Khan, while the runner-up trophy, alongwith a cheque of Rs 50,000 was collected by the Chaudhary Sports captain, Chaudhary Shafqat Hussain. The CEO of Golden Banaspati, Mian Tassadaq Rasool, announced a special award of Rs one lac for the victorious Golden Eagles team.

Individual prizes were also given away to the outstanding performers. Shahid Anwar, adjudged Player of the Tournament, was presented a cheque of Rs 10,000 with trophy while Man of the Match, Akbar Khan, received Rs 7,500 with a trophy. Best Batsman, Kamran Badar, Best Bowler, Javed Hayat, Best Wicketkeeper, Abdul Waheed, Best Fielders Imtiaz Tarar and Muhammad Shafiq, got Rs 7,500 rupees each with their awards.

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June 9, 2014

Golden Eagles take on Chaudhary Sports in National Seniors Cup regional final


Pakistan News & Features Services

Golden Eagles will clash with Chaudhary Sports in the Punjab regional final of the 16th PVCA National Seniors Cup Cricket Tournament 2014 at the Shah Faisal Ground, Lahore, on June 10.

The match will start at 9.30 am and, in view of the hot weather, the innings break will of four hours with the second half to commence at 3.30 pm while the prize distribution ceremony is due to be held at 6.30 pm. Umpires Ahsan Raza and Shahzeb Raza will supervise the final with Mohammad Anis to be the match referee.

This was disclosed by Nawab Ashiq Hussain Qureshi, Chief Executive Officer, Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA), who added that all the arrangements to hold the final in a befitting manner have been completed.

Intikhab Alam, Col Rafi Nasim, Sardar Saadat Ali Khan, Khawaja Nadeem Ahmed, Aamir Ilyas Butt, Mohammad Nazir Junior, Rizwan Nisar, Hammad Iqbal, Mohsin Aftab and Shan Shahid are among the eminent personalities having been invited in the presentation ceremony in which cash awards will be disbursed among the outstanding performers.

Golden Eagles and Chaudhary Sports had stormed into the regional final by having overwhelmed Aftab Qarshi XI and SPM Stags respectively in the semifinals, also held in Lahore, last month.

The Punjab regional winner will then take on the southern region champions, Omar Associates, in the final to be held in Lahore later this month. The event is being jointly sponsored by Arif Habib Corporation Limited and Omar Associates (Pvt) Limited.

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