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(Top) Finalists pose for a group photo with FC Sparx members and invited dignitaries ((Left) Winners AKFC-A (Right) Runners-up Pen Friends United

KUWAIT CITY, Jan 23: All Kerala Football Club (AKFC)-A were crowned champions of the UNIMONI Sparx FC 5th edition 7-Aside football tournament held at Bayan grounds on Jan 4, 2019.

The tournament was played under the auspices of Kuwait Indian Football Federation (KIFF). 13 exciting teams took part in the one-day tournament.

In an exciting final AKFC-A beat Pen Friends United 2-1. AKFC’s Jamal took the lead for the winners (1-0). But Pen Friends soon equalized converting a penalty goal through Jasmin (1-1). When the teams looked like heading for a draw, AKFC striker Shamil Muhammed scored a long range thunderbolt goal in injury time beating Pen Friends keeper Abdul Lateef (2-1). Earlier, Sparx President Baby Noushad introduced UNIMONI, Platinum Sponsors of Sparx FC squad for the Season 2018-19. Ranjith S. Pillai, Retail Sales Head of Unimoni was present at the event as Chief Guest. 
Hamza, Managing Director from Dahlia Furnished Hotel Apartments – Golden Sponsor of Sparx FC for the season was also present as well as Mansoor – Sales Manager of Grand Hyper Kuwait (Golden Sponsor for the Season 2018-19), and Shamseena – Director of Ran Energy (Golden Sponsor for the Season 2018-19).

Shanavas, Managing Director of Haitham Group International, Kuwait was another high profile delegate present on the occasion. Other dignitaries present on the occasion included KIFF President Derick Gomindes, KEFAK President Siddique TV, KIFF Sports Secretary Michael Pereira, KIFF Vice-President Robert Bernard, KEFAK Advisory Board Chairman Gulam C. Mustafa, KEFAK Sports Sec SVM Safarulla, KEFAK MC Member Pradeep Kumar TKV, O.K. Abdul Razak, Sparx patron Sajan, etc.

In the semifinals, AKFC-A beat Don Bosco Oratory 2-0 with Subith Lal and AKFC’s mercurial striker Inzamam scoring the goals. In the other semis, Pen Friends United beat United Goan Centre 1-0. Jasim scored the most important goal for Friends.

In one of the best organized tournament, a number of glittering trophies and mementos were given away. Cool winter weather and energizing spectators made the tournament equally attractive and special. Matches were officiated by KIFF referees.

In the vote of thanks proposed, FC Sparx Executive member Sameehulla thanked all participating teams, officials, sponsors and everyone who rendered their help in making the tournament a grand success. Apart from trophies for winners, runners-up and semifinal losers, the winners and runners-up were awarded glittering individual trophies.

The tournament was captured on camera by Baby Noushad and Nishad. Wonderful mementos were presented to honor Ranjith S. Pillai – Head Retail Sales from Unimoni, Hamza – Managing Director from Dahlia Furnished Hotel Apartments, Shamseena Director From Ran Energy, Mansoor – Sales Manager from Grand Hyper Kuwait, Sameer Nasri – FC Sparx Team Manager, KalaiVanan Krishnan – FC Sparx Asst Team Manager, etc. The memorable mementos were presented at the hands of KEFAK Advisory Board Chairman Gulam C. Musthafa,KEFAK President Siddique TV, KEFAK MC Member Pradeep Kumar TKV, KIFF President Derick Gomindes, Bernard Fernandes – Official Incharge of KIFF, Sajan (Sparx FC Patron), etc. Prizes were given away at the hands of Robert Bernard – KIFF Vice-President, KEFAK Sports Sec SVM Safarulla, Abdul Latheef, President of Pen Friends United, Babynoushad – President FC Sparx, Shamseena (Director Ran Energy and Shanavas VK), Hamza & Gulam Musthafa, etc.

The Winners Trophy was handed over by Ranjith Pillai of Unimoni, and Derick Gomindes – KIFF President. Following individual prizes were given away: Top Scorer of the Tournament – Anas of Pen Friends BestGoalkeeper – Shiva Prasad of AKFC-A Best Defender – Mahshook of Pen Friends United Best Player – Inzamam of AKFC- A Man of the Match ( Final) – Shehin of Pen Friends

BENONI: Half-centuries by Haris Sohail and Imam-ul-Haq added to three wickets from Mohammad Amir helped Pakistan complete a good all-round win on the final day of their three-day warm-up fixture against the Cricket South Africa (CSA) Invitation XI in Benoni on Friday.

The tourists won by six-wickets late on day three at the Willowmoore Park, completing their preparations for the three-match Test series starting against Faf du Plessis-led South Africa at the SuperSport Park in Centurion on Wednesday.

Amir, who missed the recent series against Australia and New Zealand in the United Arab Emirates, first bagged three for 35 in 12 overs as the hosts declared on 182 for seven in their second innings.

Neil Brand was the top-scorer for the home side with 71 (off 145 balls, six fours and one six), while there were useful 30s from captain Marques Ackerman (32) and Onke Nyaku (37).

That enabled the South Africans to set a target of 195 in around 50 overs.

The Pakistanis were rarely troubled in their chase thanks to the anchoring innings played by Imam-ul-Haq.

The opener made 66 (93 balls, 10 fours) as he shared in a first-wicket stand of 42 with fellow left-hander Shan Masood, who made 24, before Fakhar Zaman followed soon after for 17, the men to strike being Thandolwethu Mnyaka (1-20) and Kyle Simmonds (2-79).

But Imam added 96 with top-scorer Haris for the third wicket, and even though he fell not long after, a brisk and unbeaten 73 (87 balls, 10 fours and two sixes) by the

latter helped the touring side reach their target in 40.2 overs.

Scoreboard

CSA INVITATION XI (1st Innings) 318-7 declared (M.J. Ackerman 103 not out, J. Richards 98, N. Brand 38, K.I. Simmonds 30; Azhar Ali 2-29, Faheem Ashraf 2-45).

PAKISTAN (1st Innings) 306-7 declared (Babar Azam 104 not out, Azhar Ali 100, Shan Masood 41; T. Mnyaka 3-45).

CSA INVITATION XI (2nd Innings, overnight 45-1):

N. Brand c Asad b Amir 71

J. Richards b Amir 8

T.A. Dithole run out 15

M.P. Breetzke c Faheem b Amir 1

M.J. Ackermann c Babar b Azhar 32

O. Nyaku c Haris b Yasir 37

R. Moonsamy not out 10

K.I. Simmonds b Shaheen 4

EXTRAS (B-4) 4

TOTAL (for 7 wkts decl, 50.3 overs) 182

FALL OF WKTS: 1-13, 2-60, 3-62, 4-108, 5-155, 6-169, 7-182.

BOWLING: Mohammad Amir 12-2-35-3; Shaheen Shah Afridi 10.3-1-39-1; Faheem Ashraf 5-1-18-0; Hasan Ali 8-2-23-0; Yasir Shah 11-2-45-1; Azhar Ali 4-0-18-1.

PAKISTAN (2nd Innings):

Imam-ul-Haq st M’samy b Simmonds 66

Shan Masood c Dithole b Mnyaka 24

Fakhar Zaman c Nyaku b Simmonds 18

Haris Sohail not out 73

Faheem Ashraf c Cartwright b Brand 7

Mohammad Rizwan not out 4

Extras (B-2, W-1) 3

Total (for four wkts, 40.2 overs) 195

FALL OF WKTS: 1-42, 2-68, 3-164, 4-183.

BOWLING: Trumpelmann 5-1-22-0; Mnyaka 4-1-20-1; Simmonds 16-2-79-2; Cartwright 3-0-17-0; Ackermann 7-0-22-0 (1w); Brand 5.2-0-33-1.

RESULT: Pakistan won by six wickets.

UMPIRES: S. George and A.T. Holdstock.

MATCH REFEREE: A. Barnes.

Published in Dawn, December 22nd, 2018

ABU DHABI: Pakistan captain Sarfraz Ahmed faces some searching questions to answer for the second Test against Australia over his bowling attack and batting lineup after Tim Paine’s side produced a battling draw in the first match in Dubai.

Usman Khawaja defied pre-match predictions and a poor return on turning pitches in Asia to score a battling 141 and anchor his side’s defiance as they survived 139.5 overs in stifling conditions to ensure a draw.

Sarfraz’s bowlers were unable to put concerted pressure on the visitors with Khawaja reverse sweeping leg-spinner Yasir Shah seemingly at will on a pitch that was deteriorating and offering assistance to Pakistan’s four slow bowlers.

Left-arm quick Wahab Riaz also failed to effectively exploit any reverse swing he was achieving with the older ball, forcing Sarfraz to continually change his tactics and fielding positions in an effort to manufacture a wicket.

ARTICLE CONTINUES AFTER AD
 

The second and final Test starts in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday and Sarfraz’s side will be forced to make at least one change with opening batsman Imam-ul-Haq having surgery on a broken finger and ruled out of the match.

Imam scored an impressive 76 in a 205-run opening stand with Mohammed Hafeez that set up Pakistan’s first innings of 482.

He added 48 in Pakistan’s second innings of 181 for six declared but broke the little finger on his left hand while fielding on the fifth and final day and was forced from the ground.

The left-handed opener had surgery in Dubai on Saturday and would return home on Tuesday, the Pakistan Cricket Board said.

His absence will necessitate changes to the batting order with Fakhar Zaman the only other specialist opening batsman in the squad, although he is yet to make his Test debut at the age of 28 and not played a first-class match in more than a year.

Azhar Ali could also be promoted up the order to open with Hafeez with leg-spinning all-rounder Shadab Khan possibly coming into the squad to bolster the team’s bowling stocks.

The 20-year-old Shadab, however, is battling a groin injury that ruled him out of the first Test and which thwarted coach Mickey Arthur’s plans of combining him with Yasir to attack Australia’s inexperienced batting lineup.

Meanwhile, Azhar admitted Pakistan will be under pressure of expectations in the final Test.

“I can’t say if the pressure will be more on Pakistan or Australia but we are the home side and obviously people expect us to win and so there is pressure,” said Azhar on Sunday. “However, having said that these are favourable conditions for us and we have to make the most of it.

“Pressure is always different in every match and obviously this is a decider. Being the home team we have to win it and we will enter the field thinking that. We will look to play positive cricket and hopefully the result will go our way.”

The 33-year-old Azhar held the opening spot since The Oval Test in England in August 2016 and struck a triple century against the West Indies in Dubai and a double hundred against Australia in Melbourne — both in 2016.

He went to his customary number three position for the two Tests against Sri Lanka last year and in last week’s first Test against Australia.

“When playing for Pakistan one has to be ready for everything,” said Azhar. “I have always believed in that and whatever the team management decides or the captain decides, I will be ready to do that.”

Azhar admitted Pakistan players were disappointed at not winning the first Test.

“We are not disheartened but, yes, disappointed, obviously after dominating the Test match throughout and then not winning it,” said Azhar, a veteran of 66 Tests. “Unfortunately we couldn’t win but I think we also have to give credit to the Australians as well as they showed resilience and kept fighting till the end.”

Azhar said he remains focused despite not in the best of form, managing only 95 runs in the last four Tests.

“A batsman always wants to score runs and it doesn’t feel nice when he doesn’t score runs,” said Azhar. “But the important thing is to stay focused and believe that once you get a good knock things will start rolling again.”

Published in Dawn, October 15th, 2018

ماسکو: اسٹریٹ چلڈرن فٹ بال ورلڈ کپ 2018 میں پاکستان نے سیمی فائنل کے لیے کوالیفائی کر لیا۔

روس کے شہر ماسکو میں ہونے والے اسٹریٹ چلڈرن ورلڈ کپ کے کوارٹر فائنل میں پاکستان نے تاجکستان کو شکست سے کر دوسری مرتبہ اس ٹورنامنٹ کا سیمی فائنل کھیلنے اعزاز حاصل کرلیا۔

ننھے شاہین کل اسٹریٹ چلڈرن فٹبال ورلڈ کپ کے سیمی فائنل میں انڈونیشیا کا مقابلہ کریں گے۔

خیال رہے کہ اسٹریٹ چلڈرن فٹبال ورلڈ کپ کا انعقاد 2010 سے کیا جارہا ہے جو فٹبال ورلڈ کپ کی میزبانی کرنے والے ملک میں میگا ایونٹ سے پہلے کھیلا جاتا ہے جس کا مقصد دنیا بھر میں اسٹریٹ چلڈرن کی حفاظت اور حقوق سے متعلق آگاہی پھیلانا ہے۔

واضح رہے کہ 2014 میں برازیل میں ہونے والے فٹبال ورلڈ کپ سے پہلے منعقدہ اسٹریٹ چلڈرن فٹبال ورلڈ کپ میں پاکستان نے عمدہ کارکردگی دکھاتے ہوئے تیسری پوزیشن حاصل کی تھی۔

یاد رہے کہ 2010 میں ہونے والے اسٹریٹ چلڈرن ورلڈ کپ میں بھارت نے کامیابی حاصل کی تھی۔

DUBAI: Lahore Qalandars pulled an upset on Sunday by knocking down mighty Karachi Kings in a super over in the 24th match of the Pakistan Super League's third edition at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.

Courtesy half-centuries by top-order batsmen Babar Azam and  Lendl Simmons, Kings set Qalandars a 163-run target to win.

In a dramatic chase, the McCullum-led team levelled the score on the last delivery of the innings, taking the contest into the tournament's second super over.  

Qalandars' top-order batsman Agha Salman contributed 50 off 45, but it was a fiery blitz by Sohail Akhtar which changed the game, his 15 runs off eight balls, including a six and a four, bringing the unthinkable into reality.

SUPER OVER

The game went for a super over in which, playing first, Qalandars gave Kings a target of 12 runs to win.

Fakhar Zaman was run out on the very first ball. Anton Devcich, the man next in with skipper McCullum, took the super over score to 11 runs.

 
 

Lendl Simmons and Colin Ingram opened for Kings in chase of 12 runs.

Sunil Narine took the prize wicket of Ingram on the third delivery of his over.

Shahid Afridi hit the last ball of the over for six, but by then it was already too late for Karachi.

Second Innings

Muhammad Irfan (Junior) took the wicket of Anton Devcich on the very first ball of his over.  Devcich missed the leg-side flick which led the ball to hit the middle stump.

The in-form opener-batsman Fakhar Zaman fell prey to set up put by the Kings as he slogged towards a mid-wicket area, the ball landed safely in the hands of Denly.

Fast bowler Usman Khan Shinwari turned the tables in Kings' favour by dismissing Agha Salman and skipper McCullum in his over.

The six by Sohail Akhtar on the 19.3 overs shortened Kings' chase. 

First Innings

Kings' opener Joe Denly (3) departed after giving an easy catch to skipper McCullum on a flighted delivery of legspinner Yasir Shah.

Fast bowler Sohail Khan provided a much-needed relief to the Qalandars by taking down the wicket of Lendl Simmons. The opener set up a strong base for the Kings with his knock of 55 runs off 39 balls, with eight boundaries and one six on the strike of 141.02.

A pair of half centuries by Joe Denly and Babar Azam coupled with a vintage Shahid Afridi bowling spell helped Karachi Kings defeat Multan Sultans by 63 runs in the 22nd fixture of the Pakistan Super League 2018 in Dubai on Saturday.

After Multan Sultans won the toss and invited Karachi Kings to bat first, the new pairing of Joe Denly and Lendl Simmons took the crease. The two remained cautious at the start, the West Indian more so than the Englishman.

Simmons consumed 13 balls and scored just four before Mohammad Irfan sent him back to the dugout.

Babar Azam walked in.

 

By the end of 5 overs, the Kings were 30-1 and scoring at a measly six an over.

Denly took charge in the 9th and 10th overs, smacking two boundaries each off of Junaid Khan and Imran Tahir's deliveries.

 

He brought up his fifty in that same Tahir over, by the end of which the Kings were 68-1.

Denly was on a mission, almost single-handedly powering the Kings innings. Of the 95 runs scored by the end of the 13th over, 70 had come off the Englishman's willow.

Azam also played a few shots of his own, like the pretty looking six over the long-on boundary in the 14th over.

 

Denly finally departed in the 17th over. His and Azam's 118-run partnership was the highest for PSL 2018 until that point.

 

The standing ovation tells everything about the quality of his innings.

 

Ingram hit two consecutive 6s in the 18th over and Azam hit two consecutive 4s in the next over. The latter departed in the same over having scored a 39-ball 58. His second fifty of the tournament was proof that Azam can flourish in 20-over format as well.

 

Some late hitting by Colin Ingram saw Karachi Kings finish with 188-3 — the highest score of PSL 2018 and their highest score ever.

 

 

In reply, Kumar Sangakkara and Ahmed Shehzad, like they usually do at the very least, provided the Sultans a decent start.

Shehzad hit two 6s — one pretty and where he wanted to, the other ugly and a complete miscue.

 

 

The 5th, 6th and 7th and 8th overs saw Sangakkara, Sohaib Maqsood, Shehzad and Kieron Pollard depart one after the other as the Kings gained the upper hand. By the end of that 8th over, the Sultans were 62-4, with Saif Badar and Shoaib Malik at the crease.

 

 

 

 

Badar hit Shahid Afridi for a huge six in the 10th but was bowled out the very next ball. The reaction that the 19-year-old Badar's dismissal elicited from Afridi wasn't befitting of a veteran cricketer like him. Here's that sequence:

 

 

Afridi, who was bowling fast, wicket-to-wicket and with hostility of his heyday, bowled out his third Sultan of the innings, with his victim being his fellow veteran Malik.

 

The game, at this point, was all but over.

The tail extended the proceedings but the run chase had been dead for quite some time. Sohail Tanvir's late cameo of 29-ball 34 was of little use as the Sultans were all out for 125, falling 63 runs short.

Afridi was named the man of the match for his bowling figures of 3-18 in four overs.

Line-ups

Karachi Kings: Joe Denly, Lendl Simmons, Shahid Afridi, Babar Azam, Colin Ingram, Ravi Bopara, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Imad Wasim (capt), Mohammad Irfan, Mohammad Amir, Usman Khan

Multan Sultans: Ahmed Shehzad, Kumar Sangakkara (wk), Sohaib Maqsood, Shoaib Malik (capt), Kieron Pollard, Saif Badar, Sohail Tanvir, Junaid Khan, Mohammad Irfan, Imran Tahir, Hardus Viljoen

Kuwait Cricket Board appoints Herechelle Herman Gibbs as the National Coach for Kuwait Men's team 
that will participate in ICC - International Cricket Council #T20#WorldCup

Click the link to view full Album: https://www.facebook.com/pg/PakistanisInKuwait/photos/?tab=album&album_id=1640034946094814

 

 

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