PAKISTAN – ENGLAND PHYSICAL DISABILITY SERIES AT ICC
Honorary Secretary of the Pakistan Disability Cricket Association Amir Uddin Ansari: "All we want is a successful series which can play a part in the future of disability cricket and I think, so far, we have done that" Pakistan wins both matches in Twenty20 International series; three-match ODI series starts on Tuesday; free entry for all matches For the Honorary Secretary of the Pakistan Disability Cricket Association Amir Uddin Ansari, his side's successes in the Twenty20 Internationals (T20Is) against England at the ICC Global Cricket Academy on Saturday and Sunday were immensely satisfying. But more satisfying still, he said, was the fact the matches, the first between two national teams of physically disabled players where both line-ups are recognised and endorsed by the governing body of cricket in their country, were taking place at all.
"Ian Martin (the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) National Disability Cricket Manager) and I were keen to organise these matches and we said when we were doing it that we didn't care who won or who lost," said Mr Ansari. "All both of us have wanted is a successful series which can play a part in the future of disability cricket and I think, so far, we have done that." Pakistan won the two T20Is by 14 and 20 runs respectively and it means it will move into the three-match One-Day International series that starts on Tuesday full of confidence.
And Mr Ansari, who has been a driving force in disability cricket in Pakistan, is still pinching himself that the matches are happening. "Before the start of the first match the national anthems of Pakistan and England were playing and I thought ‘I can't believe we are here and playing these matches'" he said. "The feeling is unbelievable. It's almost too much to put into words.
"I am just thankful to the Pakistan Cricket Board and Chairman Mr Zakar Ashraf for supporting us, to the England and Wales Cricket Board and for the International Cricket Council for hosting us at the ICC Global Cricket Academy. "For the second match the ICC Chief Executive Mr Haroon Lorgat and the ICC Head of Cricket Mr David Richardson came to watch us and Mr Lorgat said he could not believe what he was seeing. "He saw Matloob Qureshi hitting fours with only one hand and Mr Lorgat said ‘The way he is striking the ball it doesn't look like he is playing with the use of only one hand. It is amazing.'"
Pakistan won both matches batting first, scoring 120-8 on Saturday and then 136-7 on Sunday. Dinesh Ahmed produced the top-score from the two matches with 42 for Pakistan in Saturday's victory. The two sides are now getting ready for a three-match ODI series starting on Tuesday and continuing on Friday, with the final match on Sunday 19 February. All matches are 40 overs per side and start at 1530 at the ICC Global Cricket Academy with free entry for spectators.
Details of the T20Is can be found here:
Details of the England squad can be found here:
News of the Pakistan squad can be found here: