Yet again, a low-scoring match produced a thriller as Civil Service 4s edged a 16-run victory over Carlow 2s in the Minor 2 Cup Final on Sunday in Mullingar, thanks to a man of the match performance from Asad Arshad.
Carlow couldn’t have started this final any better as, having opted to bowl first, they reduced Civil Service to 4/3 off three overs. Md Younus (3-10) taking two wickets either side of sharp run out from captain and wicketkeeper, Sofiat Alam.
From there, Asad Arshad (29) and Colm Keane (8) put on the biggest partnership of the match for the fourth wicket. Their 40-run partnership ultimately proved the difference between the sides as Keane provided the support as Arshad struck 2 fours and three maximums in his 29.
Both fell, along with Dave Nugent (13) before a serious shower fell after 24.4 overs with Service 76/6.
Md Furqan (17) struck two boundaries and a huge six over long-off but the tail could only add 28 after the resumption, as Carlow bowled Civil Service out for 104 in the 32nd over.
Furqan (2-17) and Civil Service captain Sammad Khan (3-17) combined to reduce Carlow to 22/3 inside seven overs as the chase got off to a shaky start.
It was Arshad (2-22) who struck the crucial blows for Service as he removed Rahim Ullah (10) and Carlow captain Alam (23) in successive overs to leave them 66/6, still requiring 39 for victory.
There was tension all round the ground as no one was sure who would emerge victorious from this tight struggle.
In the end, it was Kashif Awan’s (3-20) short but successful burst of 4.3 overs that made all the difference. When he had number 11 Gulzar Hafeez LBW, Carlow had been dismissed for 88 and Civil Service could celebrate a 16-run win.
Minor 2 Cup Final
Civil Service 4s v Carlow 2s, Sunday August 18th, Mullingar CC, 40 overs
Civil Service 4s 104 a/o 31.2 overs (A Arshad 29, Md Furqan 17; Md Younus 7.2-1-10-3, I Haq 6-3-17-1)
Carlow 2s 88 a/o 24.3 overs (S Alam 23; S Khan 8-1-17-3, K Awan 4.3-0-20-3, A Arshad 7-1-22-2)
Civil Service 4s won by 16 runs