Kings’ Cricket Academy beat ICC Academy by four wickets in the final to win the 2019 ICC Academy Tournament for U16s played at the ICC Oval ground in Dubai.
After winning the toss and electing to field first – as Kings’ have done throughout the competition – ICC Academy managed to post 121-5 in 20 overs.
Hamad Arshad was the most successful bowler for Kings’, picking up 2-23.
Kings’ reply was held together by man-of-the-match Chris Sequeira who top-scored with 64 in 52 balls before finally being caught out before he could score the winning runs which Kings managed to complete in the final over at the loss of six wickets.
Sequeira had to do the bulk of the scoring as the rest of the line-up failed to make an impact. Four batsmen got out for single digit scores with the next best being 13.
Kings’ captain Arshad congratulated the ICC Academy on hosting a fantastic tournament and felt his team deserved the honour of being crowned champions as they had played some exceptional cricket from the group stages all the way to the final against some of UAE’s most talented teams.
Arshad and Sequeira were part of the Kings’ Academy side that played against Pakistan great Saeed Ajmal’s Academy a couple of weeks back.
The two were among four off-spinners who spent half an hour with Pakistan spin ace Ajmal, working on the art of off-spin and fine-tuning their bowling skills.
Thanks to the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation (MOHRE) and telecommunications network du, the inaugural Happiness Sim Cricket 6s competition gets under way on Friday, March 27, at Zayed Cricket Stadium.
Together with the MOHRE, du and the Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC) the team at Abu Dhabi Cricket are excited to welcome this six-a-side competition, hosting 50 teams made up from almost 30 operative villages across the UAE; this is the second workforce cricket competition to be held at Zayed Cricket Stadium.
Speaking ahead of the first ball to be bowled, Qassim Jameel Majed, from MOHRE, said: “There has been a lot of planning and input from so many entities ahead of this event, and the workforce of this incredible nation deserves this.
“We’re not only delighted to be offering such a tournament, but also delighted to further grow our relationship with du and Abu Dhabi Sports Council.
“Furthermore, we would also like to thank Abu Dhabi Cricket, whom we worked closely with in the development and induction of the Tolerance Cup, which saw over 360 members of operatives villages participate in a thrilling two-month-long Twenty-20 cricket tournament.”
The Happiness Sim Cricket 6s tournament will welcome cricketing icons as its ambassadors, including Pakistani legend Inzamam-ul-Haq. Renowned former batsman Ul Haq was in attendance for the launch event on Wednesday, as he once again picked up the bat but this time for some fun ahead of the opening weekend.
Speaking about being an ambassador, ‘Inzi’ said: “The fantastic facilities here at Zayed Cricket Stadium are going to make this tournament one to remember for those competing.
“It’s going to be an exceptional experience for all involved and I’m delighted to be a part of this event in its first edition. I’d like to personally wish all those playing the best of luck – enjoy it and strive for glory.”
Speaking about the innovative new short format tournament, Matthew Boucher, chief executive of Abu Dhabi Cricket, added: “This is a cracking concept from the Ministry of Human Resources & Emiratisation and du and we’re excited to be selected to host this competition.
“Alongside welcoming some of the world’s leading cricket teams to our stadium, it is equally important for us to host such community events and once again host our valued workforce at Abu Dhabi Cricket.
“I know that both MOHRE and du have been working fervently to organise this exciting event, so I’d like to thank both these entities, and Abu Dhabi Sports Council, for allowing us to be part of this important community occasion.”
After five weekends of competition, the winning five teams of each weekend tournament will go through to a ‘Final 5’ Grand Final, played under the floodlights at Zayed Cricket Stadium, just two days after International Workers’ Day (May 1) on Friday, May 3.
As a UAE national company, du is thankful to the UAE’s blue-collared worker community for their ongoing contribution to nation-building, and believes that initiatives which bring joy and brings the community together must be encouraged.
It is a matter of delight for the company to support this exciting cricket tournament amidst cricketing legends in Abu Dhabi.
For more information on the tournament, visit: www.abudhabicricket.ae.
Several Pakistani players are fresh from the Pakistan Super League (PSL) while Australia are buzzing from their ODI series win in India.
Shoaib Malik won the toss and has elected to bat first.
Who will get their noses in front in the ODI series?
Find out by following the ball-by-ball updates from Sharjah below.