Adel Hussein Abdulla completes Baja Poland to stay in hunt for FIA T2 crown

Adel Hussein Abdulla back in action at Baja Poland on Sunday. (AN photo)
Updated 28 August 2016
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Adel Hussein Abdulla completes Baja Poland to stay in hunt for FIA T2 crown

SZCZECIN, Poland: Nissan’s Adel Hussein Abdulla bounced back from Saturday’s disappointment to set some solid stage times over the remaining four special stages of Columna Medica Baja Poland, round seven of the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies on Sunday.
The Qatari and French navigator Jean-Michel Polato suffered a broken suspension bracket on Saturday that prevented them from tackling the third stage, but TOK Sport team technicians repaired the damage without any problems on Saturday evening and Adel Hussein Abdulla was able to rejoin the competitive action in the FIA T2 Championship on Sunday and reach the rally finish in Szczecin in an unofficial eighth place.
The Qatari is chasing the FIA T2 title this season – open for drivers of cars entered as Series Production Cross-Country vehicles – and his Nissan Patrol has support from Nissan Qatar, Nissan Middle East and the Qatar Motor and Motorcycle Federation (QMMF).
Adel Hussein trailed series leader Yasir Saeidan by nine points at the start of the weekend, but the Saudi endured several punctured tires as well on Saturday afternoon and neither driver was able to benefit from a useful points’ haul in Poland.
Poland’s Robert Kufel, driving a Nissan Navara, dominated the early stages of the event in the T2 category, but he hit trouble on Sunday morning and this opened the door for Martin Sobiech to snatch the win in T2.
Kufel recovered well over the closing stages to move back ahead of Klaudia Podkalicka and snatch second place. Saeidan reached the finish in an unofficial seventh place, with Qatar’s Mohammed Al-Harqan in fifth.
“Obviously it was disappointing to have the problem on Saturday, but it could have been a lot worse,” said Adel Hussein. “Yasir also had problems and that meant he was not able to take full advantage of our issues and pull clear in the championship.”
Adel Hussein was unable to return to action for the second of Saturday’s 176.33km selective sections in the military area around Drawsko Pomorskie and was handed further time penalties. But the situation could have been a whole lot worse for the Qatari until his arch rival for the FIA T2 Championship, Yasir Saiedan, was also delayed and lost time.
Kufel reached the overnight halt with a seven-minute lead in the category over Martin Sobiech, as Saeidan slipped from second to seventh position after his own technical issues.
Two runs through two further shorter stages were planned for Sunday to complete the action before the ceremonial finish in the Szczecin Rally Park.
Saiedan was fastest through the 30.78km of the Dobra stage, as Kufel maintained the outright lead and Adel Hussein returned to action to record the sixth quickest time. Saeidan was the man to beat in the subsequent 17.65km of the Lubieszyn stage as well, although Adel Hussein was back in a competitive pace and third quickest on a stage where the T2-leading Kufel had his own fair share of problems.
Adel Hussein finished strongly with top three times on the last two stages and remains firmly in title contention heading to the penultimate round of the FIA World Cup in Morocco at the start of October.

2016 Columna Medica Baja Poland – positions after SS7 (T2 class):
1. Martin Sobiech (POL)/Inez Kieliba (POL) Mitsubishi Pajero 6hr 27min 00sec
2. Robert Kufel (POL)/Daniel Dymurski (POL) Nissan Navara 6hr 29min 21sec
3. Klaudia Podkalicka (POL)/Blazejj Czekan (POL) Mitsubishi Pajero 6hr 29min 54sec
4. Grzegorz Szwagrzyk (POL)/Jakub Moliter (POL) Mitsubishi Pajero 6hr 51min 15sec
5. Mohammed Al-Harqan (QAT)/Nasser Al-Kuwari (QAT) Toyota Land Cruiser 6hr 56min 28sec
6. Rebeka Jankowska (POL)/Grzegorz Jankowski (POL) Mitsubishi Pajero 7hr 06min 53sec
7. Yasir Saeidan (SAU)/Alexei Kuzmich (RUS) Toyota Land Cruiser 200 10hr 00min 54sec


Unrivaled: India now 7-0 in World Cup games against Pakistan

Updated 17 June 2019
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Unrivaled: India now 7-0 in World Cup games against Pakistan

  • Conditions did not dampen the enthusiasm of a predominantly pro-India crowd 

MANCHESTER, UK: For such an intense rivalry, it is still a lopsided contest when India and Pakistan meet at the Cricket World Cup.

India extended their record to 7-0 against Pakistan at the World Cup with an 89-run victory in a rain-interrupted encounter Sunday that likely will remain the most-watched game of the six-week tournament.

India started ominously with Rohit Sharma scoring 140 from 113 deliveries and skipper Virat Kohli contributing 77 in a total of 336-5, a record for a One-Day International at Old Trafford.

Pakistan were always behind the run-rate required.

Fakhar Zaman (62) and Babar Azam (48) put on 104 for the second wicket but when both were dismissed by left-arm wrist spinner Kuldeep Yadav within nine balls, Pakistan’s hopes faded with them.

When Hardik Pandya took wickets with consecutive deliveries in the 27th over, Pakistan were 129-5. And with a result in play because both teams had batted more than 20 overs, there was no chance of sharing points if rain prevented any more play. A delay after the 35th with Pakistan at 166-6 just prolonged the inevitable.

Pakistan were  set a revised target of 302 from 40 overs and the last five overs were a non-event with Pakistan finishing 212-6. India remained unbeaten in four games to start the tournament.

The conditions did not dampen the enthusiasm of a predominantly pro-India crowd that filled the 162-year-old venue to its 23,500 capacity. Seats were in excessively high demand, after all, with the International Cricket Council reporting more than 800,000 ticket applications for the game.

There is always extra significance when the nuclear-armed neighboring countries meet at ICC tournaments because India and Pakistan play cricket so infrequently in bilateral series.

This was no different, with a 1 billion-plus TV audience and an almost football-like atmosphere at the ground.

Kohli’s single to get off the mark was met by “Kohli-Kohli-Kohli” chants from the predominantly pro-India crowd.

Sharma set the tone with his second century of the tournament, sharing partnerships of 136 with KL Rahul (57) for the first wicket and 98 with Kohli for the second.

He seemed ready to really unleash when he needlessly paddled a ball from Hasan Ali to Wahab Riaz at short fine leg in the 38th over.

Kohli continued, becoming the third Indian batter to pass 11,000 ODI runs. In doing so in his 222nd innings, he became the fastest to reach the milestone.

Kohli was on 71 and India was 305-4 when rain stopped play for the first time in the 47th over. The India captain was caught behind off Mohammad Amir’s bowling not long after he returned from the 55-minute rain break and, surprisingly, walked off before umpire Marais Erasmus had a chance to signal him out.

There was some speculation Kohli did not edge the ball but it was inconsequential in the end, as India passed Sri Lanka’s 318-7 against England in 2006 to set the highest ODI total in Manchester.

After a batting onslaught at the top, Pakistan pegged back the run-rate slightly as Amir (3-47) dismissed Pandya (26) and then had MS Dhoni (1) and Kohli caught behind — both the ex-captain and captain walking.

Things started going haywire for Pakistan after skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed won the toss and fielded, going against the advice sent via social media by Prime Minister and 1992 World Cup-winning captain Imran Khan.

Overcast and cool overhead conditions that usually would favor swing and seam bowling didn’t greatly assist the Pakistan attack, with India racing to 52-0 in its most productive opening power play of the tournament.

The Pakistan pacemen had trouble with the umpires, with Amir and Wahab each cautioned twice for running on the protected area in the middle of the pitch. One further warning would have resulted in a suspension.

It also didn’t help that opener Imam-ul-Haq got out in rare circumstances to Vijay Shankar’s very first delivery at a World Cup — it coming on the fifth ball of Pakistan’s fifth over after Shankar was asked to finish it off for injured teammate Bhuveshwar Kumar.

Pakistan’s next game is at Lord’s against South Africa, which also has three points and only remote prospects of reaching the semifinals.