Wednesday, May 27, 2009

RBS 20-20 Cup Rocks On: Razzak Continues Form, Tanvir Picks More Wickets, Imran Nazir Attacks Again!

In the match of the day, the Lahore Lions beat the Faisalabad Wolves, to qualify for the semi finals of the RBS 20-20 Cup.

Abdul Razzak continued his fine form in the competition and reminded the Pakistan selectors of what they have been missing for a long time.

After his whirlwind century yesterday, Razzak made the ball talk today with a haul of 4-13, which helped restrict the Wolves to a low chaseable total.

Ahmed Shehzad (23 off 13) finally showed that he can bat at a better strike rate than 100, while this time it was Salman Butt's turn to get out for a 2nd ball duck.

Kamran Akmal (12* off 4) finally got a hit in the middle and all he needed was 4 deliveries to hit a 6 and a 4 to bring up the 5-wkt win for the Lions.

He continued his form behind the stumps with another 2 dismissals; he may finally make it into the Pakistan team as only a keeper!

Misbah continues to be absent from the Wolves' ranks. Where is he? He has disappeared after the Pakistan camp in the mountains. He even missed the 2 warm up matches that Pakistan played before this RBS Cup.

The Lahore Eagles who boast of no big names sprung a surprise on the favorites, the Karachi Dolphins, who look more like a Pakistan international team, beating them by 11 runs and qualifying for the semis.

Fawad Alam never fails to score or impress and was at his best today as well with an aggressive knock of 51 off 36 deliveries with a six and five boundaries.

If this isn't enough for Younis Khan then I don't know what Alam needs to do to get into a Pakistan playing XI.

Sohail Tanvir (2-18 off 4) picked up wickets again today, however what was a good sign was him being economical. Its good for Pakistan that he is getting into some form before the ICC World Twenty20.

Mohammad Aamer (3-20), the 17 year old left armer who is touted as the next big bowling thing for Pakistan and has been picked in the World Twenty20 squad, hit some form too, albeit after 2 very expensive games.

In the final match of the night, Imran Nazir once again lit up the Gaddafi with a belligerent 29 ball 60 with 9 fours and 2 sixes.

How Pakistan are going to miss him in the 20-20 world cup. He needs to be recalled back into the national team soon.

Shoaib Malik, the Stallions' skipper, was in great touch as well while knocking an unbeaten 62 off only 37 deliveries. His knock included a six and 6 boundaries.

These are good positive signs for Pakistan with most of their World Twenty20 squad members getting good hits out in the middle in 20-20 cricket. The bowlers have also done well.

The semi finals are tomorrow with Razzak's Lahore Lions taking on the Islamabad Leopards; and Malik's Sialkot Stallions clashing with the Lahore Eagles.

Still can't believe the Dolphins did not make it.

I hear that the Pakistan world twenty20 squad members will not be appearing in the semi finals.
They have been given a 2 day rest before they fly to England to play a couple of warm up 20-20 matches against South Africa (1st June) and India (3rd June), before starting their World Twenty20 campaign against hosts England on 7th June.

Make your pitch on this post...

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12 Pitched:

  1. LiB said...

    Q, you got hold of scoresheets for the practice games that were played or anything of sort to tell us whatever happened in them?

    Nazir and Razzaq are such destructive players and i hope and pray we dont resent leaving them out of the squad!

    and i would be gutted if i dont see Fawad Alam playing on the 7th of June!

  2. Q said...

    LIB: I emailed u the score sheets of those 2 practice games. I'll post abt them soon.

    I hope so too abt Razzak and Nazir..

    Same for Fawad Alam.. he needs to be in the XI.

  3. LiB said...

    Got them Q, thanx! :)

    no big surprises there.. but i have a feeling we will see a different combination of openers than what we saw against Australia!

  4. Q said...

    Apart from that Afridi's team beat Younis Khan's in both matches!

    I think Younis wants to open with Shahzaib... Lets c..

  5. Stani Army said...

    Alam needs to eat!

    They gotta put some weight on the boy....give him some protein.

    ...and a word of advice Fawad, don't got to Asif and Shoaib for your protein supplements.

    One thing that will stand him in good stead is if he develops more variety in his bowling. He would be difficult to keep out then (e.g. what Afridi did). I'm yet to see a lefty bowl a doosra. Wouldn't it be interesting if Alam managed to do it?

  6. Q said...

    Stani: He looks like a matchstick but he can hit the ball some distance.. no idea jaan kahan se aati hai!

    I like that idea of a left armer bowling a doosra.. never seen one myself..

    Alam is an average bowler at best..I reckon he can play purely as a bastman..

  7. Wasim said...

    Younis should open with Salman Butt and Shoaib Malik or Butt and Akmal, I don't think he should open himself. That Shahzaib Guy is too inexperienced and in the RBS cup he failed to impress anybody I don't know why Younis preferred him over Nasir Jamshed looks like a pure case of favoritism.

  8. Q said...

    Hi Wasim, long time..

    I dont think Malik should open, he's good in the middle order.. Butt and Akmal or Butt and Afridi shud be the choices..

    I dont think anyone suggested opening with Younis..

    Shahzaib did well in the 2nd RBS game, and also in the 2 practice matches that Pakistan played...

    Even I don't know what Nasir was not picked.. but there seems to be a history of problems with him.. he gets picked, he gets injured or sick, and then someone replaces him.

    I've heard Abdul Qadir wanted Khalid Latif in the squad, but it was Younis's insistence that got Shahzaib the nod.

  9. Wasim said...


    I was taking some time off from blogging but I did visited wellpitched regularly and thoroughly enjoyed your coverage of PAK-AUS series.

    The only reason I suggested Malik to open with Butt because I do want to see fawad in the team. We can only do it if we drop one of the openers Ahmed Shahzad or Shahzaib.

    I do not want Afridi to open as it will put unnecessay pressure on him he is doing great with the ball but still struggling with the bat although he scored a few runs against Australia but we all know that he is struggling and is not hitting the ball as cleanly as he used to.

    Pakistan will miss Nasir Jamshed and Imran Nazir.

  10. Q said...

    Thanks Wasim.

    I agree with you. I also want to see Fawad Alam in the team. Whether its with Malik or Afridi opening, Im good with it.

    But I think since Afridi hasn't done that well with the bat, maybe sending him as opener will be a good idea. People wont have that many expectations, and if he fires, it will be a bonus.

  11. Wasim said...

    Na! The opening pair mostly defines the whole innings for a team in T20,it will be a huge and unnecessary gamble, I think his biggest utility is down the order where he can face an over or two and contribute a quick fire 15-25 runs.

  12. Q said...

    I get ur point Wasim, but how many times has Afridi been of utility down the order?

    Our openers our bound to fail on English wickets.. and my point was that Afridi might just do as well as one of them, if not better.

    I agree that t20 is an impact game and the sooner the impact the better, hence if Afridi gets that 20-25 early on, the impact will be great.

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