Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2019/20 Final to start from tomorrow
The final of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2019/20 tournament will take place between Central Punjab and Northern from tomorrow (Friday 27th December) at the National Stadium, Karachi.
After their historic Test series win against Sri Lanka, Pakistan cricket stars will be in action in the final of Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2019/20 tournament between Central Punjab and Northern which commences from Friday 27 December at the National Stadium, Karachi.
Pakistan's test captain Azhar Pakistan's T20 captain Babar Azam return for Central Punjab from international duty, while the comeback of Pakistan U19 captain Rohail Nazir and top-order batsman Haider Ali strengthens the Northern side.
The final of Pakistan’s premier domestic competition, will be a five-day affair as opposed to 4 day matches during the regular games.
The contest not only provides an opportunity to both sides to get hold of the prestigious silverware but will also help them make history by being the first winners of the revamped tournament. The winner will also pocket a hefty PKR10m prize money while the runners-up will bag PKR5m.
The two sides were separated by three points on the table.
Central Punjab finished on top with 133 points, while Northern, with 130 points, ended the group-stage at number two.
When the two teams meet on Friday, Northern will be eyeing revenge as two out of Central Punjab’s three wins this tournament came against them.
The contest will be telecast live on Ten Sports and PTV Sports.
Road to the final:
Central Punjab – 3 wins, 1 loss, 6 draws, 133 points
From the onset of the first-class Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, Central Punjab established themselves as strong contenders to secure a berth in the final.
Though their journey started off with a draw in a Punjab Derby at Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, their points tally got a massive boost in the next two rounds on the back of comprehensive wins.
They rolled over Northern by an innings and 100 runs at Iqbal Stadium, Faisalabad in the second round and outplayed Balochistan, at their home, in the third round to record a victory with a margin of an innings and 12 runs.
In their third win of the season, they beat Northern, this time by a margin of 205 runs, in Faisalabad in the seventh round.
Central Punjab have lost only one match this tournament, against Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by 211 runs at NBP Sports Complex, Karachi, in the ninth-round.
Kamran Akmal and Salman Butt, second and fourth on the highest run-getters charts, have been instrumental in ensuring their side’s success with the bat.
Kamran has scored 865 runs with the help of three centuries and three half-centuries and he averages 61.79 in 14 innings. The 38-year-old has not only stamped his authority with the bat but has also been at the forefront of his side’s success with the gloves with 35 dismissals – the most in the tournament.
Left-handed opener Salman Butt has struck three centuries – including a double-century – and two half-centuries in his 827 runs at an average of 75.18.
With the ball, their spin-duo of Zafar Gohar and Bilal Asif, second and third on the list of highest wicket-takers, have been the major tormentors. Left-arm orthodox Zafar has taken 38 wickets, while off-spinner Bilal has 32 scalps to his name.
Northern – 3 wins, 2 losses, 5 draws, 130 points:
Northern languished at the bottom of the points table for the first half of the tournament but traveling to Karachi in the sixth round brought a much-desired change in their fortunes.
They recorded their first win of the tournament against Sindh at the National Stadium and took the tally of wins to three in the ninth and tenth rounds by securing wins over Balochistan by eight wickets and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa by 39 runs at UBL Sports Complex.
Their captain Nauman Ali, the top wicket-taker in the tournament, has spearheaded his side’s epic turnover. His left-arm spin has garnered 52 wickets at an average of 22.85. He has recorded as many as five five-wicket hauls this season and has the best strike-rate (42.60) amongst the top ten wicket-takers.
Northern’s Zeeshan Malik and Faizan Riaz are amongst the seven batsmen to have scored double-centuries this season. The two lead the batting charts for their side with Zeeshan being the leading run scorer from his side with 726 runs at an average of 55.85, while Faizan has 719 runs at an average of 71.90.
Top-order batsman Umar Amin has the third most runs for Northern. The 30-year-old has made 595 runs – which include a century and three half-centuries – across 10 matches.
The team of the match officials will be led by match referee Iftikhar Ahmed. Ahsan Raza and Asif Yaqoob will be on the on-field umpires, while Rashid Riaz will carry out the duties of the TV umpire. Tahir Rasheed will be the reserve umpire.
In line with the PCB’s policy of incentivising top performers, the best players of the tournament will be awarded lucrative prize moneys.
The best batsman, bowler and wicketkeeper of the tournament along with player of the tournament will get PKR500,000 each.
The man-of-the-final will be awarded PKR50,000.
The match begins at 10am.