|Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore
|Faisalabad Wolves v Rawalpindi Rams
|Asif Hussain, Shoaib Akhtar, Bilal Asad, Naved Ashraf, Mohammad Hafeez
|ABN-AMRO Twenty-20 Cup 2004/05
LAHORE, 27 April 2005: Brilliant batting by Asif Hussain of Faisalabad Wolves helped steer his team into the Triangular stage when they inflicted a crushing eight wickets defeat on Rawalpindi Rams in the ABN AMRO Twenty-20 Cup match at the Gaddafi Stadium here Thursday night.
Asif showed no sign of fear while batting against fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar who was leading the Rams in the match which was crucial for both teams. He hammered every bowler and particularly pulled and drove Akhtar at will. Asif faced 49 balls and scored an unbeaten 83 with the help of two sixes and nine fours. He came in to bat after the fall of Mohammad Salman at a total score of 16 and added 115 runs for the second wicket along with Mohammad Hafeez. Asif was declared Man of the Match.
Hafeez also scored an aggressive 51 off 37 balls of which he sent two over and six across the ropes. Naved Latif remained not out with 12.
Earlier, the RamsÃÂ skipper Shoaib Akhtar beat his counterpart on the spin of the coin and that was the only consolation he received during the match apart from making 11 runs off four balls, hitting one six and a four. Bilal Asad and Naved Ashraf made 42 each. Bilal hit three sixes and an equal number of fours.
Ashraf hit a six and sent the cherry across the ropes four times. Slow left-arm spinner Imran Khalid took 2 for 37.
On Friday (29 April 2005), three matches will be played in the Triangular Stage of the Cup - Karachi Dolphins will face Lahore Eagles at 10.am. Lahore Eagles will play against the Faisalabad Wolves in the second match that will start at 5pm. And Faisalabad Wolves will face Karachi Dolphins in the last match at 8.30 pm.
The two top teams will play the final on Saturday, 30 April 2005 starting at 7pm.
(Article: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author only.
Copyright © 2005 Asif Sohail)