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CRICKET LGS - Int19 Mar 2023

Major League Cricket USA to start on July 13, 2023 in Texas
Sports Bulletin Report Houston (USA): A new era in American cricket will launch in when six teams set to compete in the inaugural season of Major League Cricket (MLC) this summer will select their rosters for the historic competition. The first-ever draft will be held Monday at the Space Center Houston, located at the NASA Johnson Space Center. Multiple Indian Premier League team owners have invested in or partnered with Major League Cricket teams, including the Kolkata Knight Riders (Los Angeles), Chennai Super Kings (Texas) and Delhi Capitals (Seattle). Several MLC teams have unveiled their team names and logo ahead of the draft, along with high- performance partnerships with some of the world’s leading cricket entities. Select overseas star players for each time will also be announced soon. Teams will select nine domestic players to form the backbone of their rosters. The draft will be conducted in a “snake order” format, meaning the team that picks last in the first round will get the first pick in the second round. The draft will last nine rounds. No trading of picks is allowed. Each team has three minutes to make their selections in rounds one to five and two minutes in rounds six to nine. The league’s historic opening match will take place on July 13, 2023, at the newly-constructed Major League Cricket venue, Grand Prairie Stadium, in Grand Prairie, Texas. The 2023 season will feature 19 matches to be played over 18 days, building up to the first-ever MLC championship final to take place on July 30, 2023. More information on the MLC schedule and broadcast details will be announced later.

CRICKET LGS - Int19 Mar 2023

Asia Lions eliminate India Maharajah, set to meet World Gaints in final
Sports Bulletin Report Doha (Qatar): Asia Lions roared past India Maharajas with a clinical all-round performance in the Legends League Cricket (LLC) Masters eliminator held at the Asian Town Cricket Stadium in Doha. They revenged their ten-wicket defeat to India Maharajas in their last match to register an emphatic 85-run victory. Batting first, and posting a whopping total of 191 for 5 in 20 overs, Asia Lions bowled out India Maharajas for a paltry 106 runs in 16.4 overs. India Maharajas supporters had nothing to cheer except for their skipper Gautam Gambhir’s elegant knock of 32. The architects of Asia Lions’ victory was opener Upul Tharanga, who cracked 50 off 31 balls with seven boundaries and a six, and his partner Tillakaratne Dilshan contribution, who scored a run-a-ball 27 runs.  Together they put on an 83 runs partnership in 8.5 overs to set the base for a huge total. Brief scores: Asia Lions beat India Maharajas by 85 runs. Asia Lions 191 for 5 in 20 overs India Maharajas 106 in 16.4 overs Player of the Match: Upul Tharanga Final: Asia Lions and World Giants on Monday, March 20, 2023.

CRICKET LGS - PSL19 Mar 2023

Shaheen Shah Afridi named Team of PSL Season-8 captain
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE: Shaheen Shah Afridi of Lahore Qalandars was appointed as captain of the Team of HBL PSL 8 by an independent panel that was headed by Haroon Rashid (Chairman of HBL PSL 8 Technical Committee) and also included respected commentators Bazid Khan, Daren Ganga, Nick Knight and Sana Mir as members. While selecting the side, the independent panel considered a number of T20 cricket aspects, including consistency, impact on the side and overall game, and best possible team combination. Shaheen Shah Afridi inspired Lahore Qalandars to finish on top of the points table with seven wins, then helped his side to bounce back from a Multan Sultans drubbing in the Qualifier by overcoming Peshawar Zalmi in Eliminator 2, and, finally slapped a 15-ball 44 not out and took four for 51 to not only walk away with the player of the final award but also guided his side to their second successive HBL PSL title. Since the concept of Team of HBL PSL was introduced in 2019, this is the fourth successive year Shaheen Shah Afridi has made it to exclusive side.. The side also includes Multan Sultans’ Emerging Category players Abbas Afridi and Ihsanullah, who won the Emerging and Player of HBL PSL 8 awards, respectively. Like the Multan duo, it is also the first time for Mohammad Haris and Azam Khan be selected in the team of the tournament. Overall, the side includes five players from losing finalists Multan Sultans, two players each from Lahore Qalandars and Peshawar Zalmi, and one player each from Islamabad United and Karachi Kings. Mohammad Rizwan and Babar Azam have been selected as openers, with Mohammad Haris, Rilee Rossouw, Azam Khan and Kieron Pollard forming a formidable middle-order. Imad Wasim, who has been picked in the Team of HBL PSL for the first time, comes in as an all-rounder, followed by wrist spinner Rashid Khan and three fast bowlers in Shaheen Shah Afridi, Ihsanullah and Abbas Afridi. This is the fourth time in five years Babar has been selected as an opener, though it is the first time with his Pakistan team partner Mohammad Rizwan, who himself has been chosen in the team of the tournament for the third successive time. Team of HBL PSL 8 (in batting order) 1.      Mohammad Rizwan (Multan Sultans) (550 runs, 1x100, 4x50, strike-rate 142.85) 2.      Babar Azam (Peshawar Zalmi) (522 runs, 1x100, 5x50, strike-rate 145.40) 3.      Mohammad Haris (Peshawar Zalmi) (350 runs, 2x50, strike-rate 186.17) 4.      Rilee Rossouw* (Multan Sultans) (453 runs, 1x100, 3x50, strike-rate 171.59) 5.      Azam Khan (Islamabad United) (282 runs, 2x50, strike-rate 161.14) 6.      Kieron Pollard* (Multan Sultans) (260 runs, 2x50, strike-rate 163.52; 3 wickets, 8.62 eco.) 7.      Imad Wasim (Karachi Kings) (404 runs, 3x50, strike-rate 170.46; 9 wickets, 7.93 eco.) 8.      Shaheen Shah Afridi (Lahore Qalandars) (captain) (133 runs, strike-rate 168.35; 19 wickets, 9.13 eco.) 9.      Rashid Khan* (Lahore Qalandars) (20 wickets, 6.53 eco.) 10.   Abbas Afridi (Multan Sultans) (23 wickets, 9.45 eco.) 11.    Ihsanullah (Multan Sultans) (22 wickets, 7.59 eco.) 12.   Saim Ayub (Peshawar Zalmi) (341 runs, 5x50, 165.53)  

CRICKET - PCB19 Mar 2023

Saad Baig named Under-19 captain, Imran Butt to captain Shaheens
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board has appointed Saad Baig and Imran Butt as Pakistan U19 and Pakistan Shaheens captains for the upcoming tours of Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, respectively. Karachi-born Saad had captained Pakistan U19 last year against Bangladesh U19 in Multan. In that series, Saad had scored 117 runs in the four-dayer, 30 runs in the one-day matches and 107 runs in the T20s. In the National U19 three-day Championship 2022-23, the left-hander had scored 200 runs, while in the National U19 one-day Cup 2022-23, he scored 299 runs in four matches. Ali Asfand of Faisalabad had also featured against Bangladesh in the U19 series last year. He scored 45 runs and took two wickets with his left-arm spinner in the four-dayer, contributed 26 runs and took two wickets in the one-dayers and claimed three wickets in the only T20. In the National U19 three-day Championship 2022-23, Ali scored 73 runs and took 18 wickets, while in the National U19 one-day Cup 2022-23, he scored 77 runs and took 11 wickets. Pakistan Shaheens for the tour of Zimbabwe comprise seven players who have represented Pakistan in international cricket. Imran Butt, who has been named as captain, has featured in six Tests, while the others are: Hussain Talat (one ODI, 18 T20Is), Aamir Jamal (tw0 T20Is), Kamran Ghulam (one ODI), Mir Hamza (three Tests), Sahibzada Farhan (three T20Is) and Shahnawaz Dahani (two ODIs and 11 T20Is). For the first time, two players from Quetta have been selected in a national squad. They are Abdul Wahid Bangalzai and Haseebullah, while players who have graduated from the U19 pathways cricket and are in the side are Mehran Mumtaz, Mohammad Huraira, Mubasir Khan, Qasim Akram and Rohail Nazir. Pakistan Under-19 Squad: Saad Baig (captain) (Karachi), Ali Asfand (vice-captain) (Faisalabad), Ahmed Hussain (Peshawar), Aimal Khan (Peshawar), Amir Hussain (Rawalpindi), Arafat Minhas (Multan), Azan Awais (Sialkot), Hamza Nawaz (Lahore), Mohammad Ibtisam (Sargodha), Mohammad Ismail (Sahiwal), Mohammad Tahir (Fata), Mohammad Tayyab Arif (Sialkot), Obaid Shahid (Lahore), Sajjad Ali (Lahore), Shahzaib Khan (Mansehra), Shamyl Hussain (Islamabad) and Wahaj Riaz (Karachi). Abidullah (Islamabad), Ikramullah Tareen (Quetta) and Mohammad Zulkifal (Charsadda) (all reserves) Tour Schedule: 30 April- 3 May – Four-day match; ZACS, Chattogram 6 May – 1st 50-over match; ZACS, Chattogram 8 May – 2nd 50-over match; ZACS, Chattogram 11 May – 3rd 50-over match; SKS, Rajshahi 13 May – 4th 50-over match; SKS, Rajshahi 15 May – 5th 50-over match; SKS, Rajshahi 17 May – Only T20 match; SKS, Rajshahi Pakistan Shaheens: Imran Butt (captain) (Lahore), Hussain Talat (vice-captain) (Lahore), Aamir Jamal (Islamabad), Abdul Wahid Bangalzai (Quetta), Haseebullah (Quetta), Kamran Ghulam (Peshawar), Mehran Mumtaz (Rawalpindi), Mir Hamza (Karachi), Mohammad Huraira (Sialkot), Mubasir Khan (Islamabad), Muhammad Umar (Karachi), Omair Bin Yousuf (Karachi), Qasim Akram (Lahore), Rohail Nazir (wicketkeeper) (Islamabad), Sahibzada Farhan (Peshawar) and Shahnawaz Dahani (Larkana). Asif Mehmood (Hyderabad), Athar Mehmood (Gujranwala), Saad Khan (Hyderabad) and Waqar Ahmad (Peshawar) (all reserves) Schedule: 3-6 May – 1st Four-day match; KSC, Kwekwe 10- 13 May – 2nd Four-day match; MSC, Mutare 17 May – 1st 50-over match; TSC, Harare 19 May – 2nd 50-over match; HSC, Harare 21 May – 3rd 50-over match; HSC, Harare 23 May – 4th 50-over match; OH, Harare 25 May – 5th 50-over match; HSC, Harare 27 May – 6th 50-over match; HSC, Harare

CRICKET LGS - PSL19 Mar 2023

PSL: Lahore Qalanders get-rid-of Multan Sultans by 1 run to defend title
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE: Lahore Qalandars became the first team to defend HBL Pakistan Super League title as they defeated Multan Sultans by only one run in a thrilling HBL PSL 8 final at the Gaddafi Stadium on Saturday. The victory was engineered by their captain Shaheen Afridi’s blasting 15-ball 44 not out and an incredible spell of death bowling that saw him return overall figures of four for 51. Multan Sultans needed 13 runs in the final over, bowled by Lahore Qalandars’ last over specialist Zaman Khan. The equation had come down to four off the last ball, and Multan Sultans could get only two of a  Khushdil Shah mishit before he was run out at the non-striker’s end. The match had swung like a pendulum in the last five overs as Multan Sultans needed 60 with seven wickets in hand. Shaheen removed Kieron Pollard with a cutter after being whipped for a four in the 16th over that cost 11. Haris Rauf allowed only eight in the next over. Shaheen returned to deliver one of the best overs in death as he picked up three wickets and gave away only six runs to further complicate the matters for Multan Sultans. Shaheen’s first two overs, bowled in the Powerplay, had leaked 34 runs, but the left-arm pacer made his experience count at death and took four wickets for 17 runs in his final two overs. Khushdil Shah and Abbas Afridi, however, punched their way back in the match in the penultimate over by spanking Haris for 22. The over began with Khushdil dispatching the fast bowler for a six over his head and two balls later Abbas smoked him for a maximum over deep midwicket and followed it up with back-to-back fours. Multan Sultans were set 201 to win their second HBL PSL title and they were provided a rock solid start by the top-order. Usman Khan (18 off 12) and Mohammad Rizwan (34 off 23) raced to 41 before the former was bowled by David Wiese at 3.3 overs mark. Shaheen came under attack from the onset of the run chase as he was hit for seven fours in his first two overs – the first and third of the innings. Rilee Rossouw produced an entertaining half-century, spanking seven fours and two sixes in his 32-ball 52, but what stood out in his innings was how he ensured that the run rate never died down with Rizwan playing a supporting role. The pair added 64 runs for the second wicket, before Rashid Khan took two wickets in two overs to unravel the run chase. Rossouw was bowled in the 11th over and Rizwan was caught by Wiese in the 13th that brought two new batters in Pollard (19 off 16) and Tim David (20 off 16) on strike. Lahore Qalandars made 200 for six after electing to bat thanks to sparkling half-century by Abdullah Shafique and a late blitz from their captain Shaheen Afridi. Lahore Qalandars were off to a solid start with Mirza Tahir Baig unleashing exquisite shots around the dial. The right-handed opener dispatched Sheldon Cottrell, the star of the Qualifier, for a four and a six in the first over and then stole three fours in the third over. But, the timely introduction of Ihsanullah by Mohammad Rizwan cut short Tahir’s stay at the crease as he was undone by a rapid bouncer on the last ball of the fifth over. Abdullah, who made 40-ball 65 and hit eight fours and two sixes, added 57 runs for the second wicket with Fakhar Zaman. The left-hander scored 39 off 34 with four fours and a six, before he fell to Usama Mir in the leg-spinner’s first over and the 12th of the innings. Usama’s next over sent shockwaves in Lahore Qalandars camp as the leg-spinner accounted for Sam Billings (nine off eight) and Ahsan Hafeez Bhatti (0 off one) in consecutive balls and their troubles amplified at the start of the next over when Khushdil Shah bowled Sikandar Raza (one off two) as Lahore Qalandars lost three wickets for one run. What followed next was an excellent recovery from Shaheen and Abdullah as the pair added 66 runs off just 27 balls. Shaheen smashed five sixes and two fours and the first of those maximums came in the 16th over when he smashed Usama down the ground. Abdullah followed it up with a four as the two gathered 14 runs from it. But, it was the next over, which turned out to be the most expensive of the innings that proved to be innings defining. Shaheen smoked Ihsanullah for a two sixes and a four that added 24 to the total. Abdullah then spanked four fours and a six in six balls spanned across the end of the 18th and start of the 19th overs before he was caught at deep third man. The second four bringing up his half-century. Shaheen made sure to make the most of the over and spanked Anwar down the ground as the penultimate over brought 22 runs for Lahore Qalandars. It had begun with Abdullah smashing Anwar over his head for a six. The final over also brought bucket load of runs as Shaheen smoked Abbas Afridi for a four and a six.
ITC Open Tennis Championships start in Islamabad on Saturday
Sports Bulletin Report ISLAMABAD: The ITC Open Tennis Championships started on Saturday, as over 80 players are participating in different categories here at Islamabad Tennis Complex (ITC) G-6. Results (Men’s Singles Round-1): Hamza Asim beat Hammad Ali 8-2; Petro beat Taimur Adil 8-2; Mustansir Ali beat Inam Qadir 8-4; Zalan beat Ali Akbar Ali Malik 8-2;  Awais Iqbal beat Ali zain 8-2; Mohammad Salar beat Adnan Rasheed 8-4; Abdullah Shafaqat beat Haseeb Inayat 8-1; Yawar Ali beat Abdul Rehman 8-0 Quarterfinals: Hamza Asim beat Petro 8-0;  Zalan Khan beat Mustansir Ali 8-2; Mohammad Salar beat Awais Iqbal 8-2; Yawer Ali beat 8-3 Men’s Doubles (Quarterfinal): Raja Asif & Sardar beat Faisal Khan & Asim sheikh 8-3; Kashif Khan and Khurram Baig beat Awais Ahmed and Mustafa 8-4; Zalan Khan and Yawer Ali beat Taimoor Adil and Akbar Ali 8-4; Murtaza Khan and Ameen Khan beat Raja Safdar and Saleem Abbassi 8-2; Semifinal: Yawar Ali and Zalan beat Raja Asif and Sardar Sami 8-2 Murtaza Khan and Amin Khan beat Kashif Khan and Khurram Baig 8-3; Ladies’ Singles (Quarterfinal): Shandana Rabi beat Ayesha Masood 8-1 Amara khan beat Dana Psenicova 8-2 Lalarukh Sajjid beat Zarmeena 8-2 Marrukh Sajjid beat Asma 8-4 Semifinals: LalaRukh beat Shandana Rabi 8-2 Marrukh Sajjid beat Amara Khan 8-2 Boys’ Under-18 (Quarterfinals): Mustansir Ali beat Hamza Asim 8-3 Mohammad Salar beat Abdul Wasay 8-2 Sameer Kiyani beat Ali Zain 8-0 Haziq Asim beat Inam Qadir 8-4 Boys’ Under-14 (Quarterfinals): Ammar Masood beat Suleman Niazi 8-2 Sameer Maqsood beat Orhan Sohail 8-0 Abdul Wasay beat Awais Khan 8-3 Haziq Asim beat Ameen Khan 8-2; Semifinal: Haziq Hamza beat Ammar Khan 8-0 Abdul Wasay beat Sameer Maqsood 8-2; Girls’ Under-18 (Quarterfinals): Amara Khan beat Quratulain 8-2 Ayesha Masood beat Zara Shebaz 8-6 Marrukh Sajjid beat Yasmeen 8-1 Lalarukh Sajjid beat Amna Ali 8-3 Girls’ Under-14 (Quarterfinals): Lalarukh Sajjid beat Shiza Khan 8-1 Ayesha Masood beat Noreen 8-3 Zara Shebaz beat Sonia 8-5 Marrukh Sajjid beat Ayesha 8-2

TENNIS - National18 Mar 2023

All Pakistan National Tournament: Aqeel, Shoaib declared joint winners
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE: Pakistani No 1 tennis player Aqeel Khan and Mohammad Shoaib emerged joint winners as the rain washed out the men’s singles final of All Pakistan National Invitational Tennis Tournament 2023 here at DeSOM Club. Both Aqeel Khan and Mohammad Shoaib were committed to do well in the final to win the coveted trophy but due to continuous rain and wet courts, they were declared the joint winners of the prestigious event. Wapda’s Abubakar Talha (F.G School Lahore Cantt) and Ahtesham Humayun (Crescent School) were also named the joint winners of the U-16 category.
Gianni Infantino re-elected by acclamation at historic FIFA Congress
Sports Bulletin Report Kigali (Rwanda): Gianni Infantino will serve a second term as FIFA President after being re-elected unopposed to lead global football’s governing body for another four years, during the 73rd FIFA Congress in Kigali, Rwanda. President Infantino said: “Being FIFA President is an incredible honour, an incredible privilege, and it is also a great responsibility. I am truly humbled and touched by your support, and I promise you that I will continue serving FIFA, serving football all over the world and serving all 211 FIFA member associations.” For the first time in its history, an elective FIFA Congress took place in Africa. The proceedings were opened by His Excellency Paul Kagame, President of the Republic of Rwanda. In his address, President Kagame welcomed delegates from the 208 gathered member associations to his country, and congratulated President Infantino on his impending re-election. The FIFA President stressed FIFA’s role to organise competitions and to develop football. The President revealed that the 32-team FIFA Women’s World Cup™ in Australia and New Zealand later this year will receive an extensive increase in prize money to over USD 150 million – more than three times the value from the last tournament in 2019, and ten times more than in 2015. President Infantino also referenced impending changes to the FIFA Under-17 World Cups at boys’ and girls’ level, which will see those tournaments played on an annual basis, as well as the launch of the FIFA World Series and the revised 32-team FIFA Club World Cup with the intention of giving teams from every confederation more opportunities to compete on the global stage.

CRICKET - Women17 Mar 2023

Sri Lankan Chamari  Athapaththu invited to play in Hong Kong
BIPIN DANI Sri Lanka's women's team captain Chamari  Athapaththu who recently played the women's exhibition matches in Pakistan will now be playing the Cricket Hong Kong FairBreak Invitational 2023 tournament next month, it is learnt. The tournament is scheduled to be held at the Kowloon Cricket Club (Hong Kong) between April 3 and 16. The 33-year-old batting all rounder was a part of the tournament last year, when it was held in the UAE. "So far, she is the only player from Sri Lanka to have been a part of the tournament", one of the top sources in the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) confirmed. Interestingly, 90 women cricketers from 36 countries are to take part in this tournament. The tournament has the backing of Cricket Hong Kong and the FairBreak Invitational is another step towards greater recognition and the development of the outstandingly talented players in Asia also from the UAE, Nepal, Thailand, Malaysia, Bhutan, Kuwait and Hong Kong. Another aspect of this tournament is that all players and the umpires will be provided the sunglasses by Blenders Eyewear for their use. Founded in 2012 in San Diego California by Chase Fisher, Blenders is a leading American eyewear brand that manufactures sunglasses, snow goggles and prescription eyewear.

CRICKET LGS - PSL17 Mar 2023

PSL Season-8: Peshawar Zalmi oust Islamabad United by 12 runs
Sports Bulletin Report LAHORE: Brilliant spells of pace bowling in the middle and death overs from Salman Irshad and Aamir Jamal helped Peshawar Zalmi defend 183 successfully against Islamabad United in Eliminator 1 at the Gaddafi Stadium on Thursday. Islamabad United were cruising towards the target comfortably thanks to half-centuries from Sohaib Maqsood (60 off 48, seven fours and two sixes) and Alex Hales (57 off 37, seven fours and two sixes), but Salman’s incredible use of variations - that saw him return an economical two for 18 from four overs – and Aamir’s (two for 36) near perfect reverse-swing derailed the run chase. The match turned on its head at the start of the 15th over. With 56 needed off 36 balls and nine wickets in hand, Aamir bowled Sohaib to bring an end to 115-run stand. Salman cleaned up Azam Khan (two off three) in the next over and Aamir bowled Hales with a picture-perfect yorker at the start of the 17th as Islamabad United were left stunned. The situation aggravated three balls later as Faheem Ashraf (five off two) was run out and Islamabad United lost four wickets for 14 runs. Islamabad United needed 30 off the last two overs and pinned hopes on the pair of Colin Munro and Shadab Khan, but when the former played on Salman’s deceptive cutter, that proved to be the final nail in the coffin. Aamir was left 24 to defend in the last over and he did so comfortably to hand his side a 12-run win. Babar Azam scored a sparkling 39-ball 64 – that included 10 fours after his side was inserted. This was his fifth half-century of the current edition. Babar has now amassed 480 runs at an average of 53.33 and a strike rate of 148.60. The Peshawar Zalmi captain stitched strong partnerships worth 60 off 28 balls with Saim Ayub (23 off 16), 36 off 24 balls with Haseebullah (15 off 11) and 41 off 26 with Mohammad Haris (34 off 17, three fours and two sixes) to set a platform for the middle-order batters to score big, but Islamabad United bowlers brought their side back in the match. Shadab Khan took two wickets, sending back Haseebullah and Babar, and gave away 40 runs, while Fazalhaq Farooqi, Faheem, Hasan Ali and Mohammad Wasim Jnr took a wicket each.