After several disappointments in the 2014 Asian Games, the Pakistan women’s cricket team won the country its first gold medal after they defeated Bangladesh to successfully defend their crown in a repeat of last edition’s final.
“A gold in the Asiad is a gold in the Asiad,” said captain Sana Mir after Pakistan narrowly defeated Bangladesh by four runs in the final of the 2014 Women’s Twenty20 tournament at Yeonhui Cricket Ground, Incheon on Friday.
“The best team won,” the proud captain added, while talking to The Express Tribune from Korea.
Batting first, Pakistan posted a score of 97-6 in 20 overs as Bismah Maroof top-scored with a 27-ball 24. The Bangladeshi innings had to be reduced to seven overs as rain postponed the restart. Bangladesh were given a revised target of 43 in seven overs according to Duckworth/Lewis.
Bangladesh were off to a solid start but slow left-arm bowler Sadia Yousuf took two wickets in the fourth over of the innings to set up a tense finale. With 10 runs required off 12 balls, leg-spinner Mir took two wickets with two googlies in the penultimate over, giving away only three runs, to turn the tide in Pakistan’s favour. Seven were required off the final over, with off-spinner Nida Dar being handed the responsibility. The drama continued through to the last over with three dismissals – a run out and two caught and bowled wickets – as Bangladesh were only able to add two runs, falling four short of the target.
“Winning the first gold for the country in such a thrilling match makes us all the more proud of our achievement,” said Dar.
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka defeated China in the third-place play-off as they reached a modest 66-run target for the loss of five wickets in just 17.1 overs.
Pakistan’s Sanaullah progressed to the semi-finals of the 91kg men’s boxing category as he defeated Saudi Arabia’s Mohammed Ali K AlQahtani 3-0 at the Seonhak Gymnasium on Friday.
The 21-year-old, who is competing in his first Asian Games, began the campaign in Incheon at the round of 16 against an easy competitor. The three judges declared Sanaullah the unanimous winner in the three rounds. He will now face local favourite Namhyeong Park in the quarter-finals on September 30.
Meanwhile, Nadir was knocked out by India’s Shiva Thapa just a minute and five seconds into the bout in their round of 16 56kg event.
Ahmad Ali lost to Jordan’s Obada Muhammad Mustafa AlKasbeh in their third round 60-kg match.
Pakistan’s best hope for a boxing medal, Muhammad Waseem, will compete in the round of 16 match of the 52kg category today.
Pakistan’s Ghulam Mustafa Bashir finished 10th out of 28 competitors in the 25m centre fire pistol men’s competition with 386 points in three precision rounds and 294 in three rapid fire rounds having 25 inner ten shots.
Nadira Raees failed to qualify in the 50m rifle three-positions women’s qualification round, finishing 38th out of 40; earning 185 points in kneeling, 195 in prone and 182 in the standing position, with 18 inner ten shots.
Pakistan’s Areeba Sheikh finished 18th out of 27 swimmers in the women’s 50m freestyle event, recording a time of 29.55 seconds.
The Pakistan volleyball team lost 0-3 to Saudi Arabia in the Group B men’s preliminary round.
Published in The Express Tribune, September 27th, 2014.