ISLAMABAD: Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), Wapda and Higher Education Commission (HEC) earned victories on the opening day of the 24th National Baseball Championship at Army Cricket Ground GHQ Rawalpindi. The championship which kicked off on Monday would conclude on October 17.
The KP beat Gilgit-Baltistan by 12-0 in a one-sided contest in the first match. Wasim, Syed Athar, Inam and Owais scored two runs for Khyber Pakhtunkhwa while Abid, Ehtesham, Farooq and Junaid scored one run each.
In the second match, Wapda defeated Islamabad by 7-5 after a tough contest. Mukarram Usman scored two runs for Wapda while Muhammad Zakir, Muhammad Wasim, Sumair Zawar, Umair Bhatti and Noman scored one run each. For Islamabad, Fazal Rabi, Suleiman, Muhammad Fayyaz, Rehan and Owais scored one run each.
The third match was to be played between Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and HEC, but HEC recorded a protest against a player of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa before the jury, saying that the player was a regular Wapda employee. As per the rules of the tournament, departmental players cannot be part of the provincial teams without the permission of the department therefore after examining the evidence, the jury declared HEC as winner. Thus, HEC team has reached in the League Round in which the teams were divided into two groups. Group A includes Pakistan Army, Punjab, Balochistan and Sindh while Group B comprises Wapda, Police, HEC and Islamabad.
Speaking to media, Secretary General of Pakistan Federation Baseball Sheikh Mazhar Ahmed said the federation decided to hold the championship in collaboration with the Army Sports Directorate after the situation of COVID-19 improved in the country. Pakistan Army team would be defending the title in the championship.
Col (R) Shujaat Ali Rana was the Chief Guest at the inaugural function of the event. President Pakistan Federation Baseball Syed Fakhar Ali Shah, Senior Vice President of the Federation Muhammad Mohsin Khan, Jamil Kamran Chairman Baseball Umpiring Association, Musaddiq Hanif Chairman Baseball Coaching Association, Fakhar Ameer Kazmi Legal Advisor, Col Sadaf Akram Secretary Army Sports Directorate and the Managers of the participating teams were also present on the occasion.