LAHORE - Karachi Blues thrashed Sialkot Region by nine wickets to win the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy for the 10th time here at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday.

Khurram Manzor-led Karachi Blues remained unbeaten in this tournament, winning seven matches and drawing three. This match was a one-sided contest as Sialkot never looked in control with the bat or the ball over five days. On a slower pitch, with rain affecting play on day one and day three, Karachi's domination proved crucial.

Sialkot, put into bat first, failed to put up a big first innings total. M Ayub was the top scorer with 72 while Majid Jahangir scored 54 as the side was dismissed for 229. Karachi, led by Akbarur Rehman who scored a massive 178, dominated a weak bowling attack. Fast bowler Bilawal Bhatti picked up four wickets in the first innings but none of the Sialkot bowlers failed to check Karachi, who piled up a 199-run lead.

In the second innings, a 98-run, fourth-wicket stand between Ayub (69) and Sialkot captain Mansoor Amjad (60) defied Karachi but it was not enough. Once the partnership was broken, the rest of the line-up did not contribute much to the total. Sialkot began the fifth day at 189-5, trailing by 10 runs. Minutes before lunch, they were all out for 248, adding 59 runs in the first session. Tariq Haroon picked up five wickets for 74 runs as Karachi faced a target of 50 runs in 63 overs with two sessions of play left.

The chase was brisk as Akbarur Rehman and Fakhar Zaman went for a 10-wicket win before M Ayub's splendid catch at gully dismissed Zaman for 20. Rehman then knocked off the remaining runs to take his side to a comfortable victory, finishing as the tournament's top run-scorer with 986 runs.

Karachi were awarded a prize money of Rs 1.5 million while Sialkot earned Rs 1 million as runners-up. The best batsman of the tournament was Akbarur Rehman of Karachi (986 runs), Atif Maqbool of Karachi best bowler (55 wickets), Taimoor Ali of Quetta best fielder (14 catches), Naeem Anjum of Islamabad best wicketkeeper (42 catches & one stump) and Akbarur Rehman of Karachi man of the match and all were awarded Rs 50,000 each for their best performance in their respective field.


SIALKOT REGION 1ST INNINGS: 229 in 87.3 overs (M Ayub 72, Majid Jahangir 54, Bilawal Bhatti 34; Anwar Ali 4-64, Tariq Haroon 2-20, Azam Hussain 2-22)

KARACHI BLUES 1ST INNINGS: 428 in 128.5 overs ( Akbarur Rehman 178, Azam Hussain 74*; Bilawal Bhatti 4-119, Ali Khan 2-50, Faisal Rasheed 2-64)

SIALKOT REGION 2ND INNINGS: 248 in 70 overs (M Ayub 69, Mansoor Amjad 60; Tariq Haroon 5-74, Akbar-ur-Rehman 2-25, Anwar Ali 2-60)

KARACHI BLUES 2ND INNINGS: 51-1 in 7.5 overs (Fakhar Zaman 20, Khurram Manzoor 15*; Ali Khan 1-22).