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Eagles forced to land by the Zebras fighting spirit
by Asif Sohail


Ground:Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
Player:Javed Qadeer, Salman Butt, Waqas Ahmed, Atif Maqbool, Mohammad Hasnain
Event:ABN-AMRO Twenty-20 Cup 2004/05

LAHORE, 27 April 2005: Fine bowling by Mohammad Hasnain and Atif Maqbool uplifted Karachi Zebras to defeat Lahore Eagles by 54 runs in the ABN AMRO Twenty-20 Cup Group-C match at the Gaddafi Stadium here on Wednesday.

Set to achieve what most observers thought was a reachable target of 186 the Eagles, after losing two quick wickets at a total of 14, maintained their 10 plus per over run rate through some very aggressive stroke-play by Kamran Akmal. But Maqbool clean bowled him for 29 to lay the foundation of his team’s victory. Kamran faced 17 balls and dispatched seven fours.

Though the Eagles lost wickets at regular intervals to Atif and Hasnain yet a partnership of 50 for the seventh wicket between Sohail Ahmed and Ali Azmat raised their hopes for victory. Once Sohail left after scoring 31 with two fours and Ali for 20, the required run rate became too tough a task for them.

A tactical mistake that the captain of Lahore Eagles, Salman Butt, made was he sent Waqas Ahmed, who had played a hurricane innings of 46 on Tuesday, to bat too low at number 9.

The Eagles were all out for 131. Mohammad Hasnain claimed 4 for 20 while Atif Maqbool took 3 for 23.

Earlier, Khalid Latif and Fahad Iqbal had batted well and added 60 runs for the second wicket after the Karachi Zebras won the toss and elected to bat. Khalid made 29 off 23 balls and Fahad scored 31 off the same number of balls.

However, it was Javed Qadeer’s unbeaten 57 off 32 balls that helped his team to reach a score of 185 in the end. Qadeer hit a towering six and hit eight fours in his innings and earned the Man of the Match award.

(Article: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author only.
Copyright © 2005 Asif Sohail)
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