KAIA opens account with victory in CIT SPL

Naseem Al Zahra before its match against MCH Green.
Updated 15 December 2016

KAIA opens account with victory in CIT SPL

JEDDAH: KAIA opened its account beating Peeran XI by eight wickets in the 8th week matches in the CIT SPL cricket tournament at JCA Cricket Complex Usfan.
Held under the auspices of Jeddah Cricket Association, the event is sponsored by Canadian International Trading (CIT) and co-sponsored by Initial Services Group, Ace Travel and Tours, Maui Jim, Hyderabad Sharks, Pepsi (SIPCO), Mizo Juices (Arrow Foods), Khind Electronics and Bison.
Chief guest of the week’s matches and man of the match presentation was Syed Ali Mahmood, professor in King Abdul Aziz University and chief patron of Global Network of Telangana NRI’s. Guest of honor was Syed Khaja Viqaruddin, president Twin Cities Youth Welfare Association. Other distinguished guests were Khaja Muzaffaruddin, Syed Salman, Nadeem Abdul Basith, Mahmood Misri, Syed Mohiuddin Quadri and Abdullah Afzal.
After the 7th week matches were washed out due to heavy downpour, the 8th session saw fine all round performances in all matches.
KAIA scored its first win of the league with a dazzling 8 wicket win over Peeran XI thanks to Khalid’s unbeaten 69 and 2 for 35. Mohammad Shahzad of Hyderabad Sharks scored the week’s only century – scintillating 129, and then took one wicket to lead his team to a 15 runs win over Saudi German Hospital that earned him Player of the Week award. Abdul Quddus continued his all round performance with 74 runs and 3 for 38 to help Pepsi Deccan Knight score a five-wicket win over Hala International School. Shahbaz Rasheed’s spell of 4 for 30 and 32 runs was instrumental in MCH’s unbeaten run, this time getting the better of Pak Shaheen by 6 wickets. Naseem Al Zahra inspired by Usman Saeed’s rich haul of 6 for 31 after Nadeem’s elegant knock of 87 beat MCH Green by 23 runs. Ace Travel beat Malik XI by a whopping 126 runs thanks to Asif’s unbeaten 57 and Moazzam’s 61 runs.
Match summaries:
Hyderabad Sharks beat SGH by 15 runs: Hyderabad Sharks 214 for 7 in 20 overs. Mohammed Shahzad 129, Taher 22NO, Waqas 2 for 25, Umer 2 for 41. Saudi German Hospital 199 for 8 in 20 overs. Izhar 51, Taqi 28, Omer 27NO, Shahid 3 for 42, Mohd. Hassan 2 for 38.
Man of the Match: M. Shahzad
Pepsi Deccan Knights beat Hala International School by 5 wickets: Hala International School 209 for 7. Shahzad 40, Zahid 39, Amer 31, Jawwad 31, Shahjahan 29, Abdul Quddus 3 for 38. Pepsi Deccan Knights 211 for 5 in 17.5 overs. Abdul Quddus 74 NO, Syed Afroz 40, Abdul Raheem Mazhar 27NO, Sohail Bin Halais 27, Rafaqath 2 for 31.
Man of the Match: Abdul Quddus
MCH Premier beat Pak Shaheen by 6 wickets: Pak Shaheen 183 all out. Usman 70, Faisal 29, Shahbaz Rasheed 4 for 30, Wahid 3 for 17. MCH Premier 185 for 4. Irfan 64, Kashif Shafiq 52 NO, Shahbaz Rasheed 32, Atta Ur Rehman 2 for 19. MOM Shahbaz
KAIA beat Peeran XI by 8 wickets: Peeran XI 155 all out in 20 overs, Shakeel 61, Farooq 28, Ehsan 2 for 26, Khalid 2 for 35 runs. KAIA 159 for 2 in 14.5 overs Khalid 69NO, Majid 56, Abdur Raheem 2 for 31. MOM Khalid
Naseem Al Zahra beat MCH Green by 23 runs: Naseem Al Zahra 195 for 5. Nadeem 87, Osman Butt 44, Aamir Wahla 26, Qaiser 3 for 31, Azhar 2 for 27. MCH Green 172 for 9. Rana Shahzad 47NO, Mani 35, Usman Saeed 6 for 31. MOM Saeed of Naseem
ACE Travel beat Malik XI by 126 runs: ACE Travel 246 for 5. Moazzam Shaukat 61, Asif 57 NO, Bilal 41 in 27 balls, Nasik 2 for 44, Amer 2 for 54. Malik XI 119 all out Ilyas 39, Irshad 24, Abdul Wahed 3 for 10, Waqas 2 for 29, Rashed 2 for 32. MOM Asif

KSA’s martial arts heroine: ‘I got into kickboxing by coincidence, as I just wanted to join a gym’

Updated 19 March 2019

KSA’s martial arts heroine: ‘I got into kickboxing by coincidence, as I just wanted to join a gym’

  • Young Saudi triumphant at Open International Tournament despite just two years of training
  • Zahra Al-Qurashi took the gold in the women’s 70 kg category, beating Jordanian Heba Wasfi

JEDDAH: Zahra Al-Qurashi never expected to be where she is today: A gold medal winner in full contact kickboxing at the Open International Tournament for Clubs aged just 21. What started out as a gym class two years ago soon turned into a passion, leading to her victory in Amman on Sunday.

“I got into kickboxing by coincidence, as I just wanted to join a gym. I found the class and gave it a try, and decided to keep attending the classes,” she said. “A year ago, I joined Flagboxing Gym, and started training with my coach Grethe (Kraugerud). With her help, I developed my style and I am improving every day.”

Full contact is a discipline of kickboxing where punches and kicks must be delivered to legal areas of the body. According to the World Association for Kickboxing Organizations’ rules, it is legal to attack the front of the head and front and side of the torso, using “ankle-level foot sweeps.” It is prohibited to attack the throat, lower abdomen, back, legs, joints, back of the head and top of the shoulders.

A medal at her first international competition, then, speaks volumes about Al-Qurashi’s tenacity. She took the gold in the women’s 70 kg category, beating Jordanian Heba Wasfi.

“As soon as I entered the ring, everything went blank, I couldn’t hear or see anyone but my opponent, so I don’t really recall hearing my name even,” said Al-Qurashi. “I got a couple of really good kicks and punches, but she was a good opponent. I was in my own zone though, following every move and made sure I didn’t make mistakes.”

Zahra Al-Quraishi, 21, is already a gold medal winner at an international event despite being a virtual rookie in the demanding sport of kickboxing. (Supplied photos)

Hala Al-Hamrani, the owner of Flagboxing Gym in Jeddah, said: “I am over the moon. I have dreamt about this happening for 16 years, ever since I started coaching. My goal was to eventually provide the ladies of this country with an opportunity to compete.”

For approximately two months, Kraugerud, from Norway, oversaw Al-Qurashi’s workouts, adding more sparring, interval training and intense ring practice.

“I’ve had Zahra spar with men, who are bigger and stronger than her, to give her a sense of what to expect in the ring, to give her more confidence and make her mentally prepared,” said Kraugerud. “I was very proud of her as she entered the ring, you could see the respect for the sport reflected in her. We did a really good job at Flag, we really pushed for this together as a team. She’s young, but she’s talented and she will go far.”

Al-Hamrani, a member of the Saudi Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) Federation, added: “We got her ready by providing her with the right practice and training. It’s a dream come true and it’s very overwhelming because it was such a long process for something like this to happen. Zahra is an up-and-coming athlete who hopefully has a long future and I’m extremely excited to see what that future holds.”

Abdul Aziz Julaidan, chairman of the Saudi MMA Federation, hailed the result after a tough bout between the two competitors, and thanked Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal, chairman of the General Sport Authority, for the support he had given to the team.

Upon returning to her hometown of Jeddah, Al-Qurashi was greeted by her mother. “I was hugging her and crying and mom, being mom, asked if I was crying because I got hit,” she laughed. “That was her way of saying: I’m proud of you.”