Eastern Province Cricket Association (EPCA) Dammam recently organized the 1st edition of the Youm Al Watni T20 Cricket Cup sponsored by Saudi Cricket Centre (SCC). SCC T20 Youm Al Watni Cricket Tournament began on October 9, 2020, with 40 teams participating divided into 3 divisions. Premier division consisted of 10 teams, Prime division consisted of 10 teams and First division consisted of 20 teams.

Quarter Finals of first division and semi-finals of all divisions participating in the SCC T20 Youm Al Watni Tournament were held at EPCA grounds on November 6, 2020. Results are as follows:

Quarter Final 1 – First Division: Khobar Rangers C.C. (KRCC) defeated Khobar Gymkhana C.C. (KGCC) by 7 wickets. KGCC set a target of 142/5 runs. KRCC easily chased the target with wonderful innings played by Waheed Ur Rehman scoring 63(44) hitting 11 boundaries.

Quarter Final 2 – First Division: Adpco Friends C.C. defeated Young Guns C.C. by 6 wickets. Batting first, Young Guns C.C. set a target of 147/7 in 20 overs with Tauseef Ali scoring 69(44). Adpco Friends convincingly chased the target in 14.1 overs with the help of blistering innings played by Hamid Ali scoring 61(35) hitting 10 boundaries and being awarded the man of the match.

Quarter Final 3 – First Division: Cloud 7 C.C. qualified for semi-finals after defeating Young Stars C.C. in a one-sided match by 8 wickets. Young Stars batted first scored 112/9 while Cloud 7 C.C. chased the target easily in 9.3 overs. Vindeed Mohanan was awarded man of the match for his performance of grabbing 3 wickets in 4 overs giving away only 11 runs. 

Quarter Final 4 – First Division: Shayan 11 C.C. won by 7 wickets chasing 142 runs in 17.2 overs against Eastern Warriors C.C. Iqrar Ahmed was awarded the man of the match for his excellent performance of 69*(48) hitting 8 boundaries. He was well-supported by Muhammad Fahad who scored 43(34).

Semi-Final 1 – First Division: Adpco Friends C.C. beat Khobar Rangers C.C. by 7 wickets and qualified for the finals. Khobar Rangers C.C. scored 174/6 in the allotted 20 overs which was chased by Adpco Friends C.C. in 17.0 overs. Vasim Izhar played powerful innings of 51(23) hitting 7 boundaries and 3 sixes. 

Semi-Final 2 – First Division: Cloud 7 C.C. won by 8 wickets chasing 119 against Shayan 11 C.C. Abdul Sattar Khader Aziz was awarded the man of the match for his magical spell of grabbing 4 wickets in 4 overs for 23 runs. 

Semi-Final 1 – Prime Division: Enerco C.C. beat DHL Snas C.C. by 33 runs to qualify for the finals. Batting first, Enerco C.C. scored 221/3 in 20 overs. Man of the match was awarded to Kamran Shah for his powerful innings of 86(38) hitting 11 fours and 2 sixes. He was well-supported by Asad Abbas 54(32) and Shamas Cheema 46(31).

Semi-Final 2 – Prime Division: Intelligent Hawks C.C. defended 159 runs in a nail-biting semi-final beating Space Travels Falcon C.C. by 34 runs. Man of the match was awarded to Nisar Ahmed for his responsible 43(33) supported by Amir Goraya 36(35).

Semi-Final 1 – Premier Division: Pan Gulf C.C. easily defended 175 runs and won by 51 runs against Kanoo C.C. qualifying the final of the premier division. Kashif Riaz was awarded the man of the match for his outstanding performance of 70(41) hitting 11 fours and 1 six. Kashif Abbas took 3 wickets giving 20 runs in 4 overs.

Semi-Final 2 – Premier Division: Pak Saudi C.C. chased 173 runs in 19 overs set by Intelligent Qalandars C.C. Qayyum Meher scored 77(53) hitting 4 fours and 2 sixes but a man of the match was awarded to Nasir Khan for his all-round performance. He took 2 wickets and scored 59(31) hitting 5 fours and 1 six making sure his team qualified for the finals.

The final matches were played on 13 November 2020 and the results are as follows

First Division – Adpco Friends C.C. batted first and scored 140/6 in 20 overs Cloud 7 C.C chased it down in style by scoring 143/2 in 14.2 Overs and won the SCC T20 Youm Al Watni Cup (First Division). Muhammed Shafi scored a match-winning 59(39) and remained unbeaten for the fifth time in the tournament. Vineedh Mohanan’s 3/30 in 4 overs earned him the man of the match trophy. 

Prime Division – Enerco C.C. beat Intelligent Hawks C.C. by 50 runs and bagged the SCC T20 Youm Al Watni Cup (Prime Division). Batting first, Enerco posted an impressive total of 192/5 in 20 overs thanks to scintillating unbeaten innings of 75(42) by the man of the match, Shamas Sajjad Cheema. In response, Hawks folded to 142 in 17.5 overs. Akhtar Ali was the pick of the bowlers with 2/17 off his 4 overs.

Premier Division – Pan Gulf C.C. beat Pak Saudi C.C. by 9 Wickets to be crowned the winners of SCC T20 Youm Al Watni (Premier Division). Sajid Khan’s 2/23 off 4 overs helped Pan Gulf restrict Pak Saudi to a small total of 116 (all-out) in 17.2 overs. Pan Gulf cruised home in just 10 overs thanks to its openers Kashif Abbas 52(22) and Kashif Riaz 50*(30) who both scored half-centuries. Kashif Abbas was declared the man of the match. 

First Division’s wicketkeeper-batsman Shahil Ahammed (Cloud 7 CC) was the highest run-scorer of the tournament with 370 runs in 7 matches.

Top bowling honors for the tournament were shared by Nasir Mehmood (Pak Saudi CC) of Premier Division and  Vineedh Mohanan (Cloud 7 CC) of First Division who bagged 13 wickets each at an average of 14.92 and 16.77 respectively.

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New Delhi: India's 100 top billionaires have seen their fortunes increase by Rs 12,97,822 crore since March last year when the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country and this amount is enough to give 13.8 crore poorest Indians a cheque for Rs 94,045 each.

The latest India supplement of the Oxfam report 'The Inequality Virus' said it would take an unskilled worker 10,000 years to make what businessman Mukesh Ambani made in an hour during the pandemic and three years to make what he made in a second.

The report has been released on the opening day of the World Economic Forum's 'Davos Dialogues'.

Calling the coronavirus pandemic the world's worst public health crisis in a hundred years, the report said it triggered an economic crisis comparable in scale only with the Great Depression of the 1930s.

"India's 100 billionaires have seen their fortunes increase by Rs 12,97,822 crores since March last year which is enough to give every one of the 138 million poorest Indians a cheque for Rs 94,045 each," the report said.

The new global survey of 295 economists from 79 countries, commissioned by Oxfam, reveals that 87 per cent of respondents, including Jeffrey Sachs, Jayati Ghosh and Gabriel Zucman, expect an "increase" or a "major increase" in income inequality in their country as a result of the pandemic.

"India has the world's fourth lowest health budget in terms of its share of government expenditure," it said. "If India's top 11 billionaires are taxed at just 1 per cent on the increase in their wealth during the pandemic, it will be enough to increase the allocation of Jan Aushadi Scheme by 140 times, which provides affordable medicines to the poor and marginalized."

India introduced one of the earliest and most stringent lockdowns in the face of the pandemic and its enforcement brought the economy to a standstill, triggering unemployment, hunger, distress migration and untold hardship in its wake, the report said.

"The rich were able to escape the pandemic's worst impact; and while the white-collar workers isolated themselves and worked from home, a majority of the not-so-fortunate Indians lost their livelihood," it said.

The report noted that billionaires like Gautam Adani, Shiv Nadar, Cyrus Poonawalla, Uday Kotak, Azim Premji, Sunil Mittal, Radhakrishan Damani, Kumar Manglam Birla and Laxmi Mittal working in sectors like coal, oil, telecom, medicines, pharmaceutical, education and retail increased their wealth exponentially since March 2020 when India announced world's biggest COVID-19 lockdown and economy came to standstill.

On the other hand, data has shown that 170,000 people lost their jobs every hour in the month of April 2020, the report said. Findings of the report showed that rich got richer during the pandemic.

"Data shows what Ambani earned during the pandemic would keep the 40 crore informal workers that are at risk of falling into poverty due to COVID-19 above the poverty line for at least 5 months," the report said.

The wealth of Indian billionaires increased by 35 per cent during the lockdown and by 90 per cent since 2009 to USD 422.9 billion, ranking India sixth in the world after the US, China, Germany, Russia and France, it said.

In fact, the report said the increase in wealth of the top 11 billionaires of India during the pandemic could sustain the rural job scheme MGNREGA for 10 years or the Health Ministry for 10 years.

Noting that the informal sector had been the worst hit, the report said out of a total 12.2 crore people who lost their jobs, 75 per cent, which accounts for 9.2 crore jobs, were lost in the informal sector.

"The mass exodus on foot triggered by the sudden lockdown and the inhuman beating, disinfection and quarantine conditions the informal workers were subjected to turned a health emergency into a humanitarian crisis," it said.

"Over 300 informal workers died due to the lockdown, with reasons ranging from starvation, suicides, exhaustion, road and rail accidents, police brutality and denial of timely medical care. The National Human Rights Commission recorded over 2,582 cases of human rights violation as early as in the month of April 2020," the report added.

It noted that the long disruption of schooling risked doubling the rate of out of school, especially among the poor.

"Only 4 per cent of rural households had a computer and less than 15 per cent rural households had an internet connection," it said.

On health inequalities, the report said only 6 per cent of the poorest 20 per cent has access to non-shared sources of improved sanitation, compared to 93.4 per cent of the top 20 per cent. It added that 59.6 per cent of India's population lives in a room or less.

The report said 1.7 crore women lost their job in April 2020 and unemployment for women rose by 15 per cent from a pre-lockdown level.

Oxfam India CEO Amitabh Behar said if not addressed immediately, the crisis could worsen.

"Extreme inequality is not inevitable, but a policy choice. The fight against inequality must be at the heart of economic rescue and recovery efforts now," Behar said.

"Newer and creative ways of catering to the needs of the masses is possible if governments are committed to the needs of its people. It is time for the government of India to take specific and concrete actions that will build a better future, more equal and just a future for everyone," he said.