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  1. #1
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    Quaid-e-Azam Trophy 2019 Preview: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

    KPK has unearthed many Pakistani international cricketers in recent years. They may not possess the big names of other provinces but have often upset the odds in domestic competitions.

    Captain Mohammed Rizwan has been a prolific runmaker in domestic cricket and for Pakistan A. He's arguably one of the fittest cricketers in the country and an athletic gloveman. They have internationally capped seamers in Junaid Khan, Usman Shinwari, and Imran Khan Sr in addition to promising youngsters such as the tall Sameen Gul and spinner Umer Khan.

    However without centrally contracted players Fakhar Zaman, Mohammed Rizwan and Usman Shinwari, one can see KPK struggling to compete with the other sides.

    Strengths: With the centrally contracted players, KPK can beat any team on their day.

    Weaknesses: KPK lack the batting strength and will be heavily reliant on Mohammed Rizwan, Fakhar Zaman and Iftikhar Ahmed, if even available, to provide competitive totals for their bowlers.

    Players to watch: Young batsman Nabi Gul has made a strong start to his First Class career. Kamran Ghulam is a hard hitting spin-bowling all-rounder with excellent fitness levels who has the ability to catch the eye of the national selectors. Also watch out for pacer Arshad Iqbal in the Second XI.

    First XI - Sahibzada Farhan (vice-captain) (Peshawar), Adil Amin (Peshawar), Ashfaq Ahmed (Peshawar), Iftikhar Ahmed (Peshawar), Imran Khan Sr (Peshawar), Irfan Khan (FATA), Israrullah (Peshawar), Junaid Khan (Abbottabad), Kamran Ghulam (Abbottabad), Mohammad Ilyas (Peshawar), Musaddiq Ahmed (Peshawar), Nabi Gul (Peshawar), Rehan Afridi (wicketkeeper) (FATA), Sameen Gul (FATA), Umar Khan (FATA) and Zohaib Khan (Peshawar).

    Second XI - Khushdil Shah (captain) (FATA), Ahmed Jamal (Abbottabad), Akbar Badshah (Peshawar), Arshad Iqbal (Abbottabad), Asad Afridi (FATA), Asif Afridi (FATA), Atizaz Habib Khan (Abbottabad), Azizullah (Peshawar), Gohar Ali (wicketkeeper) (Peshawar), Irfanullah Shah (FATA), Khalid Usman (Abbottabad), Mehran Ibrahim (Peshawar), Mohammad Mohsin Khan (Charsadda), Mohammad Naeem (FATA), Sajid Khan (Peshawar) and Samiullah Jr (FATA).

    White ball specialists – Imran Khan Jr (Peshawar), Mohammad Arif (Abbottabad) and Mohammad Mohsin (Swat).

    PCB central contract players – Mohammad Rizwan (captain) (Peshawar), Fakhar Zaman (Mardan) and Usman Khan Shinwari (Peshawar).

    Last edited by MenInG; 12th September 2019 at 14:55.

  2. #2
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    Mohammad Rizwan as captain is an interesting move for me. Also Junaid Khan can probably chances of a return to Tests some good if he can perform well

    Rest of the players - looks like a strong squad and some new names in it for me - not sure about them.


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  3. #3
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    Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, a union of youth and aggression

    Lahore, 12 September 2009: Mohammad Rizwan will have a blend of senior and youth available at this disposal when the 2019-20 domestic season commences with their opening Quaid-e-Azam Trophy match against Northern.

    After leading Pakistan to the semi-final of the ACC Emerging Teams Cup 2018 last year, Rizwan is tasked with the demanding job of leading Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in what promises to be a competitive cricket season after the recent restructuring, which will see the country’s best cricketers feature in first-class cricket.

    In a bid to groom up-and-coming cricketers for the leadership role, Sahibzada Farhan has been appointed as Rizwan’s deputy. He will take up the captaincy responsibilities in the absence of Rizwan.

    Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s batting will revolve around the skill and experience of 29-year-old Iftikhar Ahmed. The right-handed batsman scored 660 runs in seven matches last season at an average of 73.33. He was the second highest run-getter in the 2017/18 Quaid-e-Azam Trophy with 735 runs in 11 matches and played a crucial role in helping Sui Northern Gas Pipelines Limited secure the title by scoring 73 and 106 in their 103-run win over defending champions Water and Power Development Authority in the final.

    The side’s batting will be bolstered by the presence of Adil Amin. The right-handed batsman scored 654 runs – which included his highest score of 211 not out – at an average of 60 in the last edition of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy.

    Rizwan will also have the option of resorting to 35-year-old all-rounder Zohaib Khan, under whose captaincy Peshawar turned into a force to reckon in T20 cricket. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa also boasts hard-hitting white-ball batsmen in the likes of their vice-captain, Nabi Gul and Israrullah who have the opportunity of bringing maturity in their batting with prolonged stays at the crease in red-ball cricket against quality bowling attacks.

    Khyber Pakthunkhwa’s pace department is dominated by the up-and-coming pacers, Sameen Gul and Mohammad Ilyas, who impressed in this year’s HBL Pakistan Super League, where he represented Multan Sultans.

    Twenty-year-olds Sameen and Ilyas played five matches each in the 2018/19 Quaid-e-Azam Trophy for Khan Research Laboratories and Peshawar, taking 19 wickets at 17.68 and 33 wickets at 15.90 respectively.

    Their raw talent will be complimented by the experience of the 32-year-old Imran Khan. The right-arm fast-medium has 91 first-class matches – nine of which are Tests – to his name and as many as 335 wickets under his belt.

    Their spin department might on paper lack the desired depth, but the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa side boasts exciting spinners who can wreak havoc with the assistance of the pitch.

    Umar Khan – the teenage sensation who accounted for the wickets of every marquee T20 batsman in this year’s HBL PSL – will get an opportunity to further enhance his bowling credentials. He has Zohaib and 30-year-old Irfan Khan to guide him through the challenges of first-class cricket.

    Captain Mohammad Rizwan’s squad assessment:

    “Our strength lies in our fast-bowling, which is a perfect mix of young and senior pacers. We have the bowlers who can bowl the new ball and reverse an old one.

    “We might not have that much experience in the spin department as compared to the other teams, but we will plug those gaps with the all-rounders at our disposal.

    “We have a young batting side, which plays aggressive cricket and dominates white-ball cricket. But, at the same time, we have an experienced batsman in Iftikhar [Ahmed] who takes his time at the crease and constructs an innings.

    “We will look to fine tune our combinations, because once you get them right they help you in covering up the weaker areas.”

    Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Second XI:

    The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Cricket Association Second XI side will be led by hard-hitting batsman Khushdil Shah. The left-handed batsman, who averages 47 in 54 List ‘A’ matches, struck two centuries – his highest being 154 not out – in Pakistan Cup earlier this year.

    Taking up the leadership role in three-day cricket will help the 24-year-old in gearing up for the tougher challenges ahead, while maturing as a cricketer.

    The other batsmen in the side include Mohammad Mohsin Khan, Mohammad Naeem, Samiullah Jr, Aitzaz Khabib Khan and Mehran Ibrahim. Gohar Ali will take up the gloves.

    The two Afridis Asad and Asif, right-arm leg-break and slow left-arm, are the main all-rounders in the side. The specialist spinners in the side are Sajid Khan and Khalid Usman. Arshad Iqbal, Ahmed Jamal, Azizullah and Irfanullah Shah are the pacers.

    Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Second XI begin their Quaid-e-Azam Trophy campaign at KRL Stadium in Rawalpindi against Northern.

    https://www.pcb.com.pk/press-release...ggression.html
    Last edited by Abdullah719; 12th September 2019 at 16:47.


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  4. #4
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    Likely XI

    1. Sahibzada Farhan
    2. Fakhar Zaman
    3. Iftikhar Ahmed
    4. Adil Amin
    5. Mohammad Rizwan (c & wk)
    6. Nabi Gul
    7. Kamran Ghulam
    8. Irfan Khan
    9. Sameen Gul
    10. Usman Shinwari/Mohammad Ilyas
    11. Imran Khan Sr/Junaid Khan

    12. Arshad Iqbal
    13. Umer Khan
    14. Sajid Khan
    15. Mohammad Arif

    Comments:
    • Lots of bowling but light on batting; Kamran Ghulam will play an important role in providing balance to the team
    • Will struggle in the batting department without their centrally contracted players
    • Plenty of spin options but inexperienced in FC

  5. #5
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    A bowling attack of Ilyas, Gul and Shinwari seems quite good. Gul is a nippy bowler with decent pace, Shinwari can bowl decent pace and be their attacking bowler, Ilyas is accurate and excellent with reverse swing.

  6. #6
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    I hope Umer Khan gets a chance. He is one for the future, a genuine turner of the ball with a good brain.


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