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AUS wins Maxtalent Global Pride Cup for the third time
American University of Sharjah (AUS) cricket team lifted the Maxtalent Global Pride cup for the third time by beating Manipal University by seven wickets. The final was held at the ICC Oval ground in Dubai Men's College on October 20, 2012.
Eight major universities from all over UAE participated in the tournament which was organized by Maxtalent group and is one of the most popular tournaments among UAE universities.
During league matches, AUS played against Murdoch University, Amity University and Manipal University to qualify for the semifinal spot. In what turned out to be excellent cricket, AUS beat Herriot Watt University in the semifinal with Musaab Khalid and Mohsin Imran capturing key wickets by giving away few runs. Rehan Ali and team captain, Shahzada Haris, excelled in batting. Khalid was declared Man of the Match in the semifinals for his four-wicket haul.
The final was held on Saturday, October 20, and the Manipal chose to bat first. AUS started the chase with a bang with Nasir Khan sending back Manipal's opener for a duck. AUS bowlers, with the able support of their fielders, kept the Manipal batsman in control and they scored 97 runs in the allotted 20 overs on a spinner-friendly pitch.
Realizing the danger of a turning wicket, AUS opened its inning cautiously by sending in Haris and Ali as opening batsmen. Although, they lost Ali early, Haris stuck to the wicket pairing successfully with Haseeb Taj and demolishing Manipal's bowling line-up. Haris produced a whirlwind knock of 58 runs and Haseeb contributed more than 20 runs in which both batsman hit sixes and fours. AUS lost Haris and Haseeb in the closing stages while Ankur and Khalid brought the ship to shore. It was a tremendous victory for AUS who reached the target in the 14th over.
In her message, Dr. Moza Al Shehhi, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs, felicitated the team members for their achievement and promised all assistance for their planned trip to India to participate in the College Premier League 20-20 Cricket Tournament for universities. "This victory will motivate you towards achieving new heights in the field of cricket and the proposed tour will hopefully prove beneficial not only in the sporting arena but also help you see various cultures and traditions up close," she said.
A lot of media representatives were present to cover the final match, including Pakistan Television. During the awards function, Aqib Javed, former Pakistan test player and current UAE coach, handed out the trophies and medals to the winners while Dr. Mohamed Helal, Director of Student Athletics and Recreation Department, presented the Man of the Match award to Nasir Khan of AUS. Shahzada Haris the AUS captain was adjudged the Player of the Tournament for scoring 290 runs and taking six wickets in the tournament.