KFH lifts cup final for the second time & Burgan Bank wins plate final
In a keenly contested final for the prestigious Kuwait Banks Club league 2014 trophy, Kuwait Finance House rode their luck considerably to bag the coveted KBC trophy for the second consecutive year by prevailing over Boubyan Bank in the final played at Sulaibiya ground. In a rain affected match, having scored a mammoth total of 179, Boubyan were quite unlucky to have been placed Runners Up as the D/L method proved to be the villain when the match was called off in the 15th over when KFH were slightly ahead in the run rate.
Aamer the dashing Boubyan opener batting impressively gave Boubyan a bright start and did not waste the perfect condition to hammer an aggressive 64 runs and with Saber (19 runs) added 58 for the first wicket. Nothing could stop Aamer as he clouted 4 huge hits over the ropes and struck 5 fours and with Rifkas Ibrahim, the duo added another 37 runs. Rifkas played a very useful & elegant innings of 40 runs and with Hisham as his partner, the pair added 67 runs to the fourth wicket to post a handsome total of 179 runs in 20 overs. Hisham contributed a quick fire 33 runs containing 4 boundaries and a six. KFH captain Faraz tried as many as 6 bowlers in which Irfan Bhatti & Nisar bowled extremely well to share 2 wickets each.
Needing to score almost 9 runs an over, KFH lost their flamboyant opener Abdulla too soon and it was left for Zahid & Faraz to build a 54 runs partnership for the 2nd wicket. Zahid’s sweetly timed knock of 43 runs had 2 sixes & 6 well connected hits to the fence. Sensing the possibility of a heavy shower, both the teams were updating themselves to the calculation as Boubyan bowlers maintained a consistent line and length and did not let the free scoring KFH batsmen take much liberty whereas KFH batsmen were going for great guns to match their opponents.
Irfan Bhatti with his trademark lofted shots then rose to the occasion and gave KFH a much needed impetus to hit a lightening 35 runs and as the 13th over was in progress the game was halted due to downpour. KFH were declared winners due to their having better run rate at stoppage of play.Irfan Bhatti was declared player of the match for his all-round cricketing skills.
In a tensed and nail-biting match, Burgan Bank had to take all their weapons out to narrowly prevail over Kuwait International Bank & win the KBC –Plate final in the morning session. Both the teams equally balanced, battled neck to neck in the stipulated 15 overs match which was reduced due to heavy overnight rains and it ended in a tie which saw both the teams going for the bowl out, a very rare scenario witnessed in the tournament.
Burgan won the toss and invited KIB to bat first and the decision paid well for Burgan as they got rid of Ali M, the prolific scorer of KIB very cheaply. Emphasizing on staying at the wicket, rather than trying expansive shots, Nadeem & Shiraz sticking to the basics posted 76 runs in 11 overs.
The heavy outfield was one great obstacle but gradually started drying up as the sun started shining. Nadeem’s knock of 43 runs was worth a ton of gold as KIB posted a much decent total of 102 runs in 15 overs. Shiraz contributed a well- timed 17 runs too. Amit, Ashraf, Sharma & Ejaz shared a wicket each.
Burgan openers Waheed & Kunal laid another useful partnership of 22 runs before KIB all-rounder Ali M fought back with a 3 wicket haul with his wobbling medium-pace. Waheed scored 12 runs and Kunal batting beautifully top scored with a fluent 33 runs. Burgan in 15 overs ended up with the same total of KIB.
In the five attempts given to both the teams, Burgan hit the timber twice as KIB failed to do so and Burgan Bank captured their first trophy of the season. Kunal Singh of Burgan was declared Player of the match for his splendid batting display.
The presentation ceremony was graced by the presence of Mahmoud Bastaki, Vice Chairman, Kuwait Banks Club who presented the trophies to the Winning & Runner up teams along with Asad Baig, Director General, Kuwait Cricket. Individual prizes were handed over to players by Kuwait Cricket Council members Riaz Choudhary, Mehaboob Khan,Iqbal Rajpurkar, Amanullah Palekar & Taher Khan.