The 2010 Faysal Bank T20 competition was played between the 10th and 16th October at the Gaddafi Stadium and coincidentally with Lahore Lions emerging winners after beating Karachi Dolphins by 37 runs in the final.
This was a relief for the tournament and public in a sense as the invincible Sialkot Stallions finally lost their title and dominance after 5 consecutive triumphs. The team won 25 successive matches before losing to Rawalpindi Rams in the group stages of the 7th edition by 13 runs thanks to a brilliant all-round performance from Hammad Azam who scored 37 and bagged 4 crucial scalps at significant stages.
Hammad Azam's bowling is overrated. He tends to be expensive, inconsistent and and an easy bowler to target and score off. However, he is a wicket-taker and has this knack to provide his captain with essential breakthroughs. His batting is his stronger suit and has plenty of promise such as being able to take the long handle, play aggressively, maturely and carry the bat and produce a spectacular knock if he clicks, skill such as being able to play a wide variety of shots all over the wagon wheel and assets such as being able to play accordingly and under pressure how to handle difficult situations and play responsibly and I am confident with these 3 essentials combined he has, he will flourish at the top level if provided with an extended run of opportunities.
One of the stand out performers in the competition was the Pakistani left arm pacer, Abdul Wahab Riaz who took 10 wickets for 77 runs combined in the 5 matches he played. He bowled very accurately and economically. Hence, played an instrumental role in his team's tournament victory. Perhaps the PCB ought to consider him for the shorter formats as well!? It must have been a funny old year for the former Aitchison College Pupil. Not only did he take a match winning 5 for on debut at the Oval on the 18th of August, he also bowled phenomenally well to help his domestic team to win the FB T20 against many people's surprise. But this all came with a suspicion of match fixing involvement with the NOTW revelations and also a publicised altercation with English batsmen Jonathan Trott before the start of the 4th ODI at Lords on Monday 20th of September. I'm sure he would have reflected on the ups and downs of a series of life changing events, both positive and negative influences!
Additionally, Shahzaib Hassan Khan scored heavily and consistenly with his aggressive batting. He showed his effectiveness and usefulness once more, but one has to remember how embarrassing and pathetic his contributions in England this summer were. Is he really good enough to translate such form on to the highest stage? I am doubtful about that. He looks technically and mentally inadequate for the real business in the long term view but we have to give credit to him where its due.
Imran Nazir also dominated and caught the eye in the two games he played. In my opinion it is completely mindless to ignore him in the T20 format specifically. Umar Akmal scored two half centuries in the group stages which ensured the Lions progressed to the knock out stages as expected.
Abdul Razzaq played a gem against Abbotabad Falcons in the pool game and also played a brilliant knock in the final scoring 71* off just 29 deliveries with some serious domination against a pace battery attack Karachi possessed. This was the difference between the two sides in the well anticipated domestic final and the manner and ease in which Razzler dazzled and took the game away from the strong and experienced opposition was incredible and a true treat to witness. Pakistani fans worldwide can only hope that the likes of Razzaq, Akmal jnr and Wahab will be able to taste similar success with the national side in the important months which lie ahead.
The media coverage and attendance/crowd was a credit throughout the competition's duration. Often an electrifying atmosphere was felt. This just reminds us of how much the country loves their cricket and to an extent how much they would simply adore international cricket to return on home shores in the near future. Overall, a successful tournament and congratulations to the fans and players of the winning side: LAHORE LIONS! Lets hope they get to represent Pakistan in the CL T20 next year. Surely they should have an opportunity like other nation's domestic winners?
8 years ago