KUCHING: An all-round performance by the Men in Blue (Unimas) ensured they extended their winning streak and recorded a comprehensive win by 84-runs over tournament favourites and arch rivals Swinburne in a rain-interrupted match at SK Tasuda here on Sunday.
Fortunes during the match changed just like the Kuching weather but Sakib and his boys eventually emerged shining like the sun over the city.
Unimas vice chancellor Prof Datuk Dr Mohamad Kadim Suaidi reached SK Tasuda to support his team and watched the marquee clash along with members from the Sarawak Cricket Association (SCA).
Aqib’s calculated decision to bowl first – keeping the chances of rain in mind – backfired as Unimas posted a total in excess of 160 as all of their top order batsmen contributed, Shakib’s 48 being the highlight of Unimas innings.
The already stiff target became even tougher for Swinburne as a third lengthy rain interval meant they had to score at a brisk rate to win the match.
But their openers made a sluggish start in the face of some disciplined bowling by the Unimas pacers.
They lost their main batsmen in the form of Abdul Quddos, Shoaib and Aqib early on.
Zain, though kept going after the bowlers and played one shot too many. He perished for a 30-ball 24 to Shakib.
Denial and Obaid were dismissed in quick succession and the game was almost sealed there.
Anoj took three wickets and reduced Swinburne to 58-7.
Rana and Probal picked one wicket each in the end to complete the formalities.
With this win, Unimas are now 2017 Kuching City League champions.
At the closing ceremony SCA official Mohd Badrie Akebar congratulated both Unimas and Swinburne for making it to the final and commended organisers for the success of KCL while reiterating SCA’s commitment to the development of cricket in the state.