KUWAIT: Friday, April 4, 2014 happened to be one of the brightest day for Kuwait Cricket as the large cricket loving fans all over Kuwait had the satisfaction of watching their favorite teams in action during the finals of the Six Nation festival cricket tournament organized by Kuwait Cricket which ended up in a colorful note. Pakistan selected XI the defending champions, retained their title as they prevailed over Indian selected XI by 70 runs to lift the Platinum Cup. In the morning match, Sri Lanka selected XI defeated Afghanistan selected XI to bag the Gold Cup and Bangladesh edged the spirited Kuwait XI, comprising of only Kuwait nationals to take the Silver Cup.
The presentation ceremony was graced by the presence of many dignitaries to the likes of The Ambassador of Great Briton, H.E. Frank Baker who released the tournament sovenier. Also present were the Ambassador of Australia, Ambassador of Sri Lanka, Ambassador of Afghanistan, Deputy Head of Mission of Indian Embassy, Charge D’Affairs of Pakistan Embassy and Head of Bangladesh Military mission in Kuwait. Charge D’Affairs of Pakistan Embassy presented the winning trophy & cash prizes to Pakistan & India teams while the Sri Lankan & Afghanistan Ambassdors presented the Gold Cup & cash prize to Sri Lankan & Afghanistan teams. The Silver Cup & cash prizes were presented to Bangladesh & Kuwait team by The British Ambassador.
LAHORE: Pakistan's Mohammad Hafeez stepped down as Twenty20 captain on Thursday after the team's failure to qualify for the semi-finals of the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.
Pakistan went out from the Super-10 stage after a disappointing 84-run defeat against the West Indies on Tuesday, failing to reach the last four for the first time in five editions of the tournament since its inception in 2007.
Hafeez said he accepted responsibility for the early exit.
“I accept all the responsibility of team's failure,” Hafeez told reporters after a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) meeting in Lahore.
Hafeez led Pakistan to the semi-finals in the last World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka two years ago, shortly after taking over from Misbah-ul Haq.
The all-rounder, who opens both the batting and the bowling with his off-spin, said no one had forced him to quit.
“I am under no pressure and felt that I must step down as leader by taking responsibility, and it's for the PCB to decide who to lead the team,” said Hafeez.
Pakistan have no assignment before their series against Australia in October when they play two Tests, three one-days and one Twenty20 in the United Arab Emirates.
The 33-year-old said he was ready to join the ranks under any captain.
“I am ready to play under any captain as I have done my job with responsibility as captain as well as player,” he said.
Pakistan began the World Twenty20 with a defeat against arch-rivals India before winning their next two games against Australia and Bangladesh.
Hafeez said the players had made too many unforced mistakes during their defeats.
“Our players committed mistakes which led to our defeat and we take responsibility,” said Hafeez.
“I have already apologised to the nation for letting down our fans.”
Hafeez led Pakistan in 29 Twenty20 matches, winning 17 and losing 11, while one was abandoned.
Coach Moin Khan said Hafeez's decision should be praised.
“Hafeez has accepted responsibility and has stepped down so we all must praise his decision,” Khan told reporters.
Khan also urged the media and fans to back the team.
“When we won two matches they (media and fans) made us heroes, but after the West Indies defeat they made us zeroes, so they must back us in these hard times.”
All-rounder Shahid Afridi, who led Pakistan to the semi-finals of the last 50-over World Cup in India three years ago, is widely tipped to take over the captaincy.
LAHORE: Pakistan allrounder Shahid Afridi said Thursday he was hopeful of a quick recovery from injury in time for the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh next week after his exploits at the Asia Cup.
The 34-year-old hurt his groin during the recent one-day tournament, which concluded last week and was also held in Bangladesh.
As a result he will not fly out with the team early Friday, and instead travel on Monday.
“I am recovering well and (will) hopefully play at least one warm-up match,” Afridi told reporters.
He is set to miss Pakistan's first warm-up match against New Zealand on Monday.
Pakistan's second warm-up match will be against South Africa on March 19.
One of cricket's hardest hitters, his sparkling form with the bat helped Pakistan beat arch-rivals India in the Asia Cup, sealing victory in the last over by striking successive sixes.
He followed up with a whirlwind 25-ball 59 to anchor a tough 327-run chase against hosts Bangladesh, before Pakistan stumbled in the final to eventual winners Sri Lanka.
But Afridi said Pakistan could still take heart from their victory over India, against whom they will play in their first proper match of the tournament in Dhaka on March 21.
“The Asia Cup win over India will benefit us,” said Afridi, but cautioned: “We have to be at our best to beat India who will now be with (Mahendra Singh) Dhoni.
Afridi, who also bowls leg-spin, will be key to Pakistan's World Twenty20 campaign.
In 70 Twenty20 matches, Afridi has 1044 runs and 73 wickets.
Afridi was player of the tournament in the inaugural World Twenty20 held in South Africa, with Pakistan finishing runners-up to India.
He was man-of-the-match in the semi-final and final in Pakistan's only World Twenty20 triumph in England in 2009.
“I can't see a better (limited-overs) combination in the world than Pakistan because our bowling is good, batting is good but the only mistake we are doing that's in fielding and fielding is the most essential thing in limited-over cricket,” Afridi said.
DHAKA: Shahid Afridi smashed two consecutive sixes off Ravichandran Ashwin in the final over as Pakistan defeated India by one wicket in Dhaka on Sunday, virtually knocking the arch-rivals out of the Asia Cup. Pakistan, chasing India’s 245-8, needed nine runs off the last four balls after losing their way from a seemingly winning position to slump from 200-4 to 236-9 at the Sher-e-Bangla stadium.
But the seasoned Afridi sealed his side’s win with two mighty hits off the next two deliveries to keep Pakistan afloat in the five-nation tournament with their second win in three matches. India, the reigning World Cup champions, suffered their second defeat in three games and are unlikely to make the March 8 final even if they beat Afghanistan in their last match on Wednesday.
Afridi returned unbeaten on a quickfire 34 off 18 balls, studded with three sixes and two boundaries, but the victory was set up by all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez. Hafeez picked up two wickets and then top-scored with 75, adding 87 runs for the fifth wicket with Sohaib Maqsood (38) after Pakistan were reduced to 113-4 in the 23rd over. But both batsmen fell in successive overs — Hafeez caught in the deep off Ashwin and Maqsood was run out — to leave Pakistan on 203-6. India grabbed three more wickets to make it 236-9 before Afridi’s blitz in the company of last man Junaid Khan carried the jubilant Pakistanis home. Afridi, a 34-year-old veteran of 377 one-dayers, said he was delighted to contribute to his side’s win in a crunch match.
“Expectations were high,” he said. “We all know how important this game was and I am glad I did it. It’s a great occasion whenever we play against India and today was our day.” Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq appeared a relieved man after Afridi’s heroics. “It was a really important win and I am happy because Pakistan played really well under pressure,” he said. “We have the label of being bad chasers, but Hafeez and Maqsood did well and Afridi finished it perfectly.” India’s Virat Kohli, standing in as captain for the injured Mahendra Singh Dhoni, said he was proud of the way the team responded to the challenge.
“The guys put in a good effort after a modest total,” he said. “We were 20 to 30 runs short with the bat.
But this game could have gone either way. We may not make it to the final, but I am proud how the bowlers fought back.” Indian leg-spinner Amit Mishra marked his first match in the tournament with two for 28 from 10 steady overs on the slow pitch. Pakistan had unsettled India’s batsmen with pace and spin after electing to field, with Saeed Ajmal claiming 3-40 and debutant fast bowler Mohammad Talha and Hafeez two each.
Opener Rohit Sharma (56) and Ambati Rayudu (58) were the main contributors for India at the top of the order, before Ravindra Jadeja hit an unbeaten 52 off 49 balls towards the end. Left-hander Jadeja, who walked in to bat in his 100th one-dayer with his team on a shaky 155-5, smashed four boundaries and two sixes to boost the total. Rayudu put on 52 for the fifth wicket with Dinesh Karthik and 59 for the sixth with Jadeja before he holed out in the deep in the 47th over. Afghanistan, who stunned Bangladesh in their last match, take on Sri Lanka in Dhaka on Monday.
India vs Pakistan Scoreboard
DHAKA, March 2, (AFP): Full scoreboard from the Asia Cup one-day international between India and Pakistan at the Sher-e-Bangla stadium in Dhaka on Sunday:
R. Sharma c Hafeez b Talha 56
S. Dhawan lbw b Hafeez 10
V. Kohli c Akmal b Gul 5
A. Rahane c Hafeez b Talha 23
A. Rayudu c sub (Ali) b Ajmal 58
D. Karthik c Ajmal b Hafeez 23
R. Jadeja not out 52
R. Ashwin st Akmal b Ajmal 9
Mohammed Shami c Maqsood b Ajmal 0
A. Mishra not out 1
Extras: (lb3, w5) 8
Total (for eight wickets, 50 overs) 245
Fall of wickets: 1-18 (Dhawan), 2-56 (Kohli), 3-92 (Sharma), 4-103 (Rahane), 5-155 (Karthik), 6-214 (Rayudu), 7-237 (Ashwin), 8-237 (Shami)
Bowling: Hafeez 9-0-38-2, Gul 9-0-60-1 (w2), Junaid 7-0-44-0 (w1), Afridi 8-0-38-0, Talha 7-1-22-2 (w2), Ajmal 10-0-40-3
Sharjeel Khan b Ashwin 25
Ahmed Shehzad c Ashwin b Mishra 42
Mohammad Hafeez c Kumar b Ashwin 75
Misbah-ul-Haq run out 1
Umar Akmal c Jadeja b Mishra 4
Sohaib Maqsood run out 38
Shahid Afridi not out 34
Umar Gul c Rahane b Kumar 12
Mohammad Talha c Jadeja b Kumar 0
Saeed Ajmal b Ashwin 0
Junaid Khan not out 1
Extras: (lb11, w6) 17
Total (for nine wickets, 49.4 overs) 249
Fall of wickets: 1-71 (Sharjeel), 2-93 (Shehzad), 3-96 (Misbah), 4-113 (Akmal), 5-200 (Hafeez), 6-203 (Maqsood), 7-235 (Gul), 8-236 (Talha), 9-236 (Ajmal).
Bowling: Kumar 10-0-56-2 (w3), Shami 10-0-49-0, Ashwin 9.4-0-44-3 (w1), Jadeja 10-1-61-0, Mishra 10-0-28-2 (w2)
Pakistan won by one wicket.
Umpires: Nigel Llong (ENG) and Bruce Oxenford (AUS)
TV umpire: Raveendra Wimalasiri (SRI)
Match referee: Jeff Crowe (NZL)
Pakistan Sports Association Kuwait. is proud to announce the Final Dates for "1st PSA Kuwait Table Tennis Championship 2014".
Register ASAP to confirm your place as we will be having limited players & registrations will be finalized on 1st come basis after meeting all registration criterias
Those who have registered before during pre-registration will be given preference. Please register online again & also update your passport size photo which we can use during match fixups.
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Deadline for Registration is 25th Feb, 2014
LAHORE: Pakistan captain Misbah-ul-Haq said on Friday he hoped his team will carry the momentum of their recent one-day winning form into the Asia Cup starting in Bangladesh next week.
Pakistan will open the defence of the title they won under Misbah in 2012 with a match against Sri Lanka on Tuesday.
“For me every team is favourite (to win the Asia Cup) but we definitely have the edge as we have won our last two one-day series,” Misbah told reporters on the last day of a training camp.
Pakistan won a three-match series in South Africa 2-1 before taking a five-match series against Sri Lanka in the United Arab Emirates 3-2 in December last year.
Five-time Asian champions India, hosts Bangladesh and Afghanistan are the other teams in the event which runs until March 8.
Misbah believed hosts Bangladesh are also dangerous.
“In their home conditions Bangladesh will also be very dangerous because the way they played in the last Asia Cup, beating India and Sri Lanka, they will be equally dangerous,” said Misbah.
Misbah said because of the twin wins, Pakistan have an ideal combination.
“We have given good performances and because we won the last two series the combination is good and when you are on a winning run your confidence is high and that's the case with us,” said Misbah.
Misbah refused to reveal his plans when asked about when he would hang up his boots.
“I don't know why people are after me,” said a visibly irked 39-year-old, who leads Pakistan in Tests and one-day matches.
“I want to play with commitment as long as I play,” said Misbah, the world's leading scorer in one-days in 2013 with 1,373.
Despite his form there remain concerns who will lead Pakistan in the 2015 World Cup to be jointly hosted by Australia and New Zealand.
Pakistan will fly to Dhaka on Saturday.
Pakistan suffered a huge blow to their Asia Cup and World Twenty20 preparations as fast bowler Mohammad Irfan, the team's spearhead in recent times, was ruled out of both events due to a recurrence of his hip injury.
Lanky Irfan, the tallest ever man to play international cricket at 7 feet one inch, fractured his hip in Pakistan's T20 series against South Africa in UAE in November last year.
However, his recovery proved short lived when the injury recurred in a domestic tournament this week, prompting chief selector Azhar Khan to say Irfan had to be left out of the squads.
“Irfan was left out as he injured himself again and needs some time for recovery,” Khan told reporters while announcing the squads.
The notable inclusions in the squads for the upcoming events are Fawad Alam, who returns to the ODI squad after a gap of over two years and Kamran Akmal and Shoaib Malik who have been included in the World T20 squad.
“Kamran and Malik will give experience to the team for the important event,” said Khan.
The Asia Cup will be held in Dhaka, from February 25 to March 8. Besides Pakistan - the defending champions - India, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and hosts Bangladesh will also take part in the event.
The fifth edition of the World T20 with 16 teams in competition will also be held in Bangladesh from March 16 to April 6.
Asia Cup squad:
Misbah-ul-Haq (Captain), Mohammad Hafeez, Ahmed Shehzad, Sharjeel Khan, Shahid Afridi, Umar Akmal, Sohaib Maqsood, Fawad Alam, Saeed Ajmal, Abdul Rehman, Junaid Khan, Umar Gul, Anwar Ali, Bilawal Bhatti, Mohammad Talha
World Twenty20 squad:
Mohammad Hafeez (Captain), Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik, Saeed Ajmal, Umar Gul, Sharjeel Khan, Sohaib Maqsood, Junaid Khan, Bilawal Bhatti, Sohail Tanvir, Umar Akmal, Zulfiqar Babar, Mohammad Talha, Ahmed Shehzad, Kamran Akmal