Karachi Urban To Contest Nissar Trophy

The Mohammad Nissar Trophy match, a four-day first-class contest between the domestic champions of Pakistan and India, will be played at the National Stadium in Karachi from September 8th to 11th. The final will be contested this year by our very own Karachi Urban, who of course, bagged the 2006-07 Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and Mumbai, the current Ranji Trophy champions, India’s most prestigious domestic competition.

Both Mumbai and Karachi have traditionally been the strongest sides in domestic cricket in India and Pakistan respectively. Mumbai have an unprecedented 34 titles to their credit, including 15 back-to-back wins from 1958-59 to 1972-73. Karachi have dominated similarly, winning 17 times, including 9 consecutive wins between 1958/59 and 1967/68.

So its very apt that they should be reigning champions this time around when the Nissar Trophy is once again being conducted. In September last year, in the inaugural Nissar Trophy match, played in Dharmasala, Uttar Pradesh had comfortably defeated Sialkot by 316 runs. So there is also some revenge out there to be taken by the Pakistanis.

And not only will the Karachi side have home advantage on their side, they’ll also be facing a Mumbai side missing their regular captain that took them to championship success. Amol Muzumdar, Mumbai’s captain last year, has made himself unavailable for selection because of commitments in Durham League Cricket in England, making way for Wasim Jaffer, the Indian Test opener, to lead the side in his place.

Karachi Urban, as they’re called, will be led by Hasan Raza, once upon a time test cricket’s youngest ever player. Test discards Asim Kamal and Faisal Iqbal will also be around, as will be the veteran batsman Saeed bin Nasser. The rest of both the Mumbai and Karachi teams have also been announced and can be seen at Cricinfo.

Don’t be surprised if you can’t recognise some of those names, news of India and Pakistan’s domestic cricket, as Mushtaq Ahmed once said, travel little beyond the actual boundaries of the stadiums they’re played in. Of course you can’t really blame the public for not taking interest in domestic cricket when the officials themselves responsible for organising them are plunged in levels of indifference competing with those of the political hierarchy. No prizes for guessing that the PCB is yet to start any sort of marketing campaign for the event.

Accordingly, no news yet of any possible television coverage or even just ticket arrangements. I should just learn to lower my expectations. When these sort of logistics aren’t taken care of for high profile international matches any sooner then the last few days leading up to a match, to expect them to be proactive for a lowly domestic encounter is just plain naive. I should just be thankful that at least we have Cricinfo.

1 Comment so far

  1. Hasan Zuberi (unregistered) on September 4th, 2007 @ 5:09 pm

    Good to see the best of the two countries …

    Keep up posting the interesting stuff.

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