The fourth and the most scintillating match on February 01, 2019 Ajman saw Hokarsar Rangers triumph over BuherKadal Badshah in the ongoing fourth season of the Marina Home Kashmir Super League being played in UAE.
When the captains, Abid Parray and Imran Malik stepped on the pitch to toss the coin, the MCC ground came across as one of the most beautiful places on this planet - its verdure brightened by a glorious early afternoon sunshine and the blades of grass in perfect symphony with the gentle breeze wafting across the outfield. It was Imran’s call and he opted to bat. Having played three group matches BuherKadal Badshah had already lost two - a win for Badshahs’ was crucial in order to have a decent chance to go through into the quarter-finals. The performances of Tajamul Wani in the previous matches belied his prowess with the bat but he assumed his true avatar against Hokarsar. The opening pair of Imran and Tajamul put up a decent partnership of 37 runs in 2.4 overs before Imran was caught by Nadeem Reshi off Abid Parray for 18 runs - it was followed by a more substantial partnership of 103 runs between Tajamul and Suhail Qadir before Samiullah Najar’s beguiling off-break clinched an edge to be caught behind the stumps by Nadeem Reshi on 23. Tajamul kept one end intact well into the eighteenth over and in the process scored a whirlwind 150 off 63 balls - the highest individual score in all the editions of KSL. It was a batting spectacle that which left the spectators spellbound. Another notable contribution was that of Issar Ashraf who scored 29 runs off 12 balls. The Badshahs’ managed to put up a mammoth total of 259 in 20 overs with the loss of eight wickets - the second highest match score in KSL IV. Amjad Khan was the leading wicket-taker from Hokarsar finishing off with figures of 27 for 3, Idris Mir clinching two wickets, Abid Parray and Samiullah Najar one a piece.
Hokarsar Rangers got off to a brisk start but lost Idris Mir in the second over with the team score on 22. Undaunted by an early debacle, Samiullah Najar unleashed an array of masterful and commanding stokes but was caught in the fourth over - in the process scoring 21 off 9 balls - in a manner this classical defiant vignette from Samiullah engendered belief, and with Amjad Khan joining Bilal Wani at the crease one could witness a fusion of nobility and leonine power shaking hands intermittently and interchangeably. The two wielded their willows with aplomb and dexterity- it was anything but slogging - copybook stroke play it assuredly was! The dynamics of their individual batting, severally and collectively, barred the run-rate venturing into forbidden dominions - they always had it at the beck and call of their willows - it appeared they were in no hurry to meet the target, albeit rather using the ball for private pleasure. Bilal Wani was caught in the twelfth over with the team scoreline reading 158. He scored a magnificent 65 off 31 balls having just completed his journey from his workplace in Saudi Arabia into the U.A.E a couple of hours before the start of the match. Hokarsar lost three quick wickets in the thirteenth over of otherwise illustrious batsmen- Nadeem Reshi, Furqan Ashiq and Umer Wali. Unfazed, skipper Abid Parray stepped in and scored a vehement quickfire 31 off 14 before being caught by Sheikh Ovais off Imran Malik in the seventeenth over - Hokarsar Rangers were 225 for 7 in 16.2 overs. With the mainstay of batting gone, save Amjad, Sajjad Ahmed Mir stepped in - the buoyancy of the team did rub on him well and he ably held his end to enable Amjad reach his well deserved century in the eighteenth over - even finish off the game with a deft square cut off Imran Malik. Hokarsar overhauled 259 of the BuherKadal Badshah scoring 261 with seven balls to spare - unprecedented in the annals of MHKSL contests. Imran Malik was the highest wicket taker having clinched 4 wickets for 53 runs followed by Suhail Qadir with 2 for 46 runs.
When the saga ended, Amjad could not contain his pent-up emotions - he did allow his feelings to flow unabashedly - although past his prime no batsman seemed at high noon as him on that memorable evening - no wonder he was awarded the pride of performance of delivering the ball and returning it with a measured class !