India sinks in gulf, Raza leads from front as Pak A lifts title
Abu Dhabi, May 6: Ravindra Jadeja could not pouch the skier off Hasan Raza's willow when the batsman was on 34 and the Pakistan A skipper went on to slam an unbeaten ton to power his side to a 36-run win against India A to lift the BSNL EurAsia Series title at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium here last night.
More celebrations awaited Raza, who was in scnitillating form in the tournament, as the Pakistan A captain bagged both the Man of the Match and Player of the Series awards.
Opting to bat first, Pakistan A put up a solid batting display and even the likes of RP Singh and VRV Singh had little effect on them.
It was Reetinder Singh Sodhi's gentle medium pace that earned India A the first breakthrough wheh he had Mohammad Hafeez (19) caught behind and then young spinner Piyush Chawla struck double blows, removing Taufeeq Umar (40) and Shahid Yousuf (23) as Pakistan slumped to 88 for three. But that brought in Raza (106 not out) and Misbah-ul Haq (73) and the duo took the game away from the Indians, putting on 174 runs for the fourth wicket with the Indian bowlers on a leatherhunt.
Raza remained not out after scoring 106 from 112 balls that was studded with eight hits to the fence and a six.
Misbah-ul Haq, before he returned run out, scored 73 off 94 balls with four boundaries and a six.
Chasing a victory target of 289, India A lost both their openers -- Robin Uthappa and Shikhar Dhawan -- with the score at 42 and then Sodhi (69) and skipper Venugopal Rao (70) joined hands to put the side back on track.
Though they managed to stem the slide, they could not exploit the middle overs and to make it worse, Mansoor Ahmed removed both in the same over and India A were never in the game since then and were all out in 47.5 overs, still 36 runs behind the rival's score.
Scoreboard: Pakistan A: Mohammad Hafeez c Karthik b Sodhi 19 Taufeeq Umar st Karthik b Piyush Chawla 40 Shahid Yousuf c Uthappa b Piyush Chawla 23 Hasan Raza not out 106 Misbah-ul-Haq run out 73 Bazid Khan not out 11 Extras (LB-8, W-6, NB-2) 16 Total (For four wickets in 50 overs) 288 Fall of wickets: 1/46 2/85 3/88 4/262 Bowling: RP Singh 10-0-60-0 VRV Singh 9-0-77-0 RS Sodhi 10-1-39-1 Piyush Chawla 10-0-41-2 Ravindra Jadeja 9-0-47-0 Venugopal Rao 2-0-16-0 India A: Robin Uthappa c Bazid Khan b Umar Gul 23 Shikhar Dhawan c Bazid Khan b Samiullah Khan 17 RS Sodhi c Zulqarnain b Mansoor Amjad 70 Y Venugopal Rao st Zulqarnain b Mansoor Amjad 69 Dinesh Karthik b Yasir Arafat 11 Rohit Sharma c Taufeeq Umar b Mansoor Amjad 14 S Badrinath c Shahid Yousuf b Yasir Arafat 5 Piyush Chawla c Umar Gul b Mansoor Amjad 1 VRV Singh c Hasan Raza b Umar Gul 8 Ravindra Jadeja not out 5 RP Singh c Yasir Arafat b Umar Gul 4 Extras (B-1, LB-3, W-18, NB-3) 25 Total (All out in 47.5 overs) 252 Fall of wickets: 1/41 2/42 3/189 4/192 5/212 6/219 7/221 8/231 9/240 Bowling: Samiullah Khan 9-1-43-1 Umar Gul 9.5-0-37-3 Yasir Arafat 9-0-49-2 Mansoor Amjad 10-0-68-4 Mohammad Hafeez 10-0-51-0