LAHORE - Five-star Akhtar Ayub helped Rawalpindi outclassed Islamabad by 228 runs to win their maiden Quaid-e-Azam Trophy title here at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday.
When fifth day started, Islamabad was facing near-inevitable defeat at 99 for five wickets as they had to chase 435 runs, but heavy fog wiped out the first session. After play began, Islamabad resisted for brief periods as their captain Imad Wasim scored 49 runs and offered some fight, anchoring two quick partnerships of 36 and 38 respectively, but failed to build on his start. The last wicket stand of Junaid Nasir and Muddasir Ali added 43 quick runs before the side was dismissed for 206 runs. Akhtar Ayub was the pick of the bowlers for Rawalpindi with his five-wicket haul, conceded 67 in 19 overs.
Earlier in their second innings, Rawalpindi posted a decent total of 398 runs. Opener Shoaib Nasir slammed 177 off 296 balls. Nasir had scored a two-ball duck in the first innings but made up for it in the second, adding useful runs with the middle order including a 159-run, fourth-wicket stand with Babar Naeem that steadied the innings after quick wickets. Nasir's innings had 27 fours and two sixes. Rawalpindi's first innings was not so assured and the side were struggling at 60 for 6 before a 139-run partnership for the seventh wicket between Awais Zia (76 off 185 balls) and Zahid Mansoor (60 off 168) helped the side reach 211.
Islamabad fared poorly in their first-innings too, as only four batsmen scored in double figures. Their first innings total of 175 was propped up by Afaq Raheem's 85 off 158 balls. The title winning team Rawalpindi received cash prize of Rs 2,500,000 and trophy, runners-up Islamabad got Rs 1,500,000 and trophy while man of the final Shoaib Nasir of Rawalpindi, best batsman Israrullah of Peshawar (875 runs), best bowler Nasir Malik of Rawalpindi (65 wickets), best outstanding cricketer/all-rounder: Imad Wasim of Islamabad (804 runs and 41 wickets) received Rs 50,000 each.
RAWALPINDI 1ST INNINGS: 211
ISLAMABAD 1ST INNINGS: 175
RAWALPINDI 2ND INNINGS: 398
ISLAMABAD 2ND INNINGS:
Afaq c Talha b Nasir 0
Zeeshan c Talha b Ayub 28
Ali Sarfraz c Awais b Haseeb 6
Faizan Riaz b Nasir Malik 23
Imad Wasim c Munir b Ayub 49
Moid Sheikh c Talha b Ayub 10
Shehzad Azam c Zahid b Haseeb 13
Sarmad Bhatti b Ayub 26
Kashif c Talha b Ayub 1
Nadir c Adnan b Baber 41
Mudassir Ali not out 6
EXTRAS: (lb 1, w1, nb 1) 3
TOTAL: (all out in 64.5 overs) 206
FOW: 1-1, 2-12, 3-52, 4-66, 5-78, 6-114, 7-152, 8-158, 9-163
BOWLING: Nasir Malik 22-5-66-2, Haseeb Azam 18-7-43-2, Akhtar Ayub 19-3-67-5, Baber Naeem 1.5-0-1-1, Adnan Mehmood 4-1-28-0.
Umpires: Shozab Mirza and Zameer Haider