Pakistan News & Features Services
Omar Associates overpowered the star-studded Moin Khan Academy by 25 runs and Hyderabad hammered Jamshoro by 143 runs in the latest round of the Southern Zone matches in the 16th National Seniors Cup Cricket Tournament 2014.
The annual tournament, organized by the Pakistan Veterans Cricket Association (PVCA), is being sponsored by Arif Habib Corporation Limited and Omar Associates (Pvt) Limited, offering cash awards of Rs 805,000.
As expected, the match between Omar Associates and Moin Khan Academy, played here at TMC Ground, provided an absorbing contest between bat and ball. Omar Associates did well to reach a total of 225 for seven, due to the onslaught in the final overs, and they managed to defend it successfully despite being challenged by high-quality batsmen.
Put into bat, Omar Associates was struggling at 135 for seven but the 90-run unbroken seventh wicket stand between Man of the Match Iqbal Shaikh (49 off 32 balls) and Ahmed Hanif (41 off 25 balls) lifted the total substantially. Dr Kamal (2-26) and Mahmood Hamid (2-38) were the successful bowlers for Moin Khan Academy.
Mahmood Hamid took the centre stage again with the bat, scoring an unbeaten 64 off 44 balls, but the Omar Associates bowlers, not overawed by the big names, didn’t let the other batsmen settle down/ Moin Khan, Ghulam Ali and Rashid Latif perished while trying to force the pace as they were contained to 200 for six in the allotted 25 overs, which was 26 runs short of their target. Left-arm spinner Nadeem Musa (2-28) was the pick of the bowlers.
Shahid Ansari’s century and Ahmed Ali’s five-wicket haul fired Hyderabad to an emphatic 143-run victory over Jamshoro at Niaz Stadium, Hyderabad. They shared the Man of the Match award after a one-sided encounter.
Opener Shahid Ansari whacked three sixes and 13 fours in his 100 off 67 balls to provide Hyderabad an explosive start. The late flourish was provided by Daulat Ram (52 off 30 balls) and Rashid Khan (33 off 10 balls) which raised the total to 260 for six in the allotted 25 overs despite fine bowling from leg-spinner Abid Baloch (3-28).
Jamshoro succumbed under the pressure of the huge score and wickets kept on tumbling at regular intervals with none of their batsmen coming to terms with the deadly spin of Ahmed Ali who tormented them with the impressive figures of five for 15 off four overs. Jamshoro was restricted to 117 for nine in 25 overs.
A record number of 108 teams from 58 cities are participating in the tournament, having been divided in 24 Groups. 35 city teams from Punjab, 13 from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, eight from Sindh, three from Islamabad and one from FATA have entered the tournament with the national final to be played between the winning teams of North and South zones at Lahore on May 4.