Assad Vala bowling for the Galaxy Gladitators Lantau (Source: Cricket Hong Kong/Takumi Photography)
HEBOU PNG Barramundis’ Captain, Assad Vala took two (2) wickets in their maiden victory in the DTC Hong Kong T20 Blitz against Hong Kong Island on Friday.
Batting first, Hong Kong Island posted a very competitive 7/177 off their allotted 20 overs at the Tin Kwong Road Recreation Ground against the Gladiators, with current Pakistan Test Captain, Misbah-ul-Haq smashing an unbeaten 84 runs off just 50 balls. Vala bowled impressively in his third match of the tournament, taking 2/18 off three (3) overs.
Chasing their first win of the tournament, the Galaxy Gladiators’ International Cricketing stars Kumar Sangakarra (70* off 42 balls) and Jesse Ryder (41 off 23 balls) guided the Gladiators to a comfortable eight (8) wicket victory. Vala was next in to bat for Gladiators when Sangakarra and Anshuman Rath (53* off 47 balls).
After the match, Assad Vala spoke to Cricket PNG and was happy with the result.
“I am really happy with this experience. I had a good ball but unfortunately, I didn’t get a chance to bat with Kumar (Sangakarra), who put on a masterclass to take us home. I was next in but I was not complaining watching one of the cricketing greats in action,” said Vala.
Galaxy Gladiators will take on Kowloon Cantons in their final round robin match before the finals take place on Sunday 12th March, 2017.
DTC Hong Kong T20 Blitz is a Twenty20 franchise cricket tournament scheduled to hold its second edition from March 8-12 in 2017. The tournament has extended to a five-team competition from the inaugural four with the event held over five days at Tin Kwong Road Recreation Ground in Mong Kok. The Hong Kong T20 Blitz brings the world’s best short form players together the with the premier local domestic cricket talent.
There is also a focus on developing Associate Cricket, with each team required to select at least one overseas player from a non-full member nation. A total of five overseas players per team will be permitted in the 2017 tournament, up from 3 in a playing XI in 2016.
This is the first time that any PNG cricketer has been selected in a professional cricket competition in the world. HEBOU PNG Barramundis’ players Assad Vala (Brisbane Heat), Charles Amini Jnr (Sydney Sixers) and Lega Siaka (Melbourne Renegades) all received Cricket Australia’s Big Bash League Rookie Contracts in the past but never actually played a game.
Hong Kong Island 7/177 (20) Misbah-ul-Haq 84* (50), Dan Pascoe 23 (19), Assad Vala 2/18 (3), Azeem Rafiq 2/22 (4) defeated by Galaxy Gladiators 2/178 (19) Kumar Sangakarra 70* (42), Anshuman Rath 53* (47), Jesse Ryder 41 (23) by eight wickets with six balls to spare.