Sports Board Punjab (SBP) cricket team routed Sports Journalists XI by eight wickets in an exhibition cricket match played in connection with Independence Day celebrations here at LCCA cricket ground on Tuesday.
Director General Sports Punjab Adnan ArshadAulakh, who was the chief guest on this occasion, unveiled the trophy before the match. He was also introduced to all the players and officials of both the cricket teams on this occasion. He also distributed prizes among top performers. Director Sports Hafeez Bhatti, Deputy Director Chand Perveen, Tariq Wattoo, Zahoor Ahmed, Assistant Director Raeesur Rehman, Sports Journalists Association of Lahore (SJAL) President Aqeel Ahmed, Secretary Ashraf Ch and a large number of print and electronic media personnel were also present on this occasion.
Sports Journalists XI led by skipper Aqeel Ahmed, elected to bat first after winning the toss. Hafiz Shahbaz and Abdul Qadir Kh opened the innings but they could not contribute big scores owing to some outstanding catches of SBP XI fielders. However, Umer Farooq and Zahid Shafi provided much-needed support to Sports Journalists XI innings with knocks of 26 and 11 runs respectively and took the total of their team to 70 in 12 overs. Abubakar Bilal contributed with six and Arslan five runs.
Faisal Hashmi, who remained top wicket-taker for Sports Board Punjab with the figures of 2/11, sent two Sports Journalists XI batsmen back to pavilion through his fiery bowling. Ajmal Niazi, Kashif and Latif got one wicket apiece. In reply, SBP XI chased the target losing just two wickets. Ajmal Niazi was top scorer for SBP XI with 37 runs while M Imran struck 14 and skipper Zahoor Ahmed five runs. Umer Farooq took one wicket for eight runs for Sports Journalists XI. Ajmal Niazi was named man of the match.
Talking to media, Director General Sports Punjab Adnan Arshad Aulakh lauded the positive role of media for the promotion of sports culture across the province. “No sports can grow without the active participation of print and electronic media. We have given special significance to the media in Punjab’s first ever Sports Policy as a major stakeholder,” he said and added: “It is media which conveys every aspect of an event to the masses. The excellent coordination of the SBP and SJAL will continue in future as well.