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September 18, 2018

Here is how you can get the ‘bat’ signed by Pakistan’s Asia Cup squad


Tue, Sep 18, 2018

It can become quite dreary in the hustle and bustle of the daily life of what is called the ‘global city’ or the business hub of the Middle East, Dubai. But despite the hard-pressed, busy life, the city also happens to be an eventful one with a plethora of events happening every now and then to the likes of Cricket Matches, Award Shows, Motor Shows, Shopping Festivals, Film Festivals, Food Expos and many more. This serves as a breeze of fresh air for all and sundry but specially for the expatriate Pakistanis who are away from their home country. The different forms of amusement provide for some comfort being away from their loved ones.

This is a rather fascinating story of one such spirited Pakistani family residing in Dubai; the Farrukh Shehzad family who, just like every Pakistani, has a colossal passion for cricket. Bar none. But who would have known that their passion would go a long way for such a big and noble cause!

Here’s how it goes. Farrukh is blessed with two sons (Mekaeel and Jibraeel) who are getting trained at the ICC Academy in Under 7 and 11 age groups respectively. Fortunately for the family, they found out that both Team Pakistan and India would be in the Academy for an afternoon for the pre-event practice sessions for the Asia Cup 2018 match between the two rivals.

So, on Friday, September 14, they made no mistake and in the sweltering heat of the Dubai city, set out to see (and possibly meet) their favorite Cricket stars. They also carried with them two bats with the hope and delight of obtaining an autograph or two of their heroes. It was almost unreal for the family to witness so many Cricket superstars on one platform. It was too good to be true!

The Indian team finished off with the session later in the afternoon around 3PM and abruptly left the facility to the dismay of all the Indian fans as the team failed to interact with their fans who had already been eagerly waiting to meet with their their cricketing heroes. Luckily for the family, most of the crowd had been cleared off allowing to comfortably watch their Team Pakistan practice.

Despite the scorching heat, Team Pakistan vigorously continued its practice session with the coaching staff also seen hard at work with the team members. It was indeed a spectacular sight to see.

As the session drew to an end, all the fans, and the Shehzad family alike, were cheering up and super excited to finally meet their idols. Much to the excitement of the fans who had already been impatiently waiting to meet their heroes, Team Pakistan did not take too long to wrap up the session and reach toward the enthusiastic fans. Thanks to the authorities including PCB, ICC Academy and Team Pakistan itself, who made this happen. The family was absolutely thrilled as it had gotten more than they had bargained for!

The Shehzad family was actually dumbfounded to have obtained autographs from the entire Team Pakistan as well as the head coach Mickey Arthur, batting coach Grant Flower and bowling coach Azhar Mehmood on both the bats and not to mention plenty of selfies that were also taken in the process with the stars. It was a dream come true for the family to say the least.

This paved the way for a novel idea by the family to put the signed bats up for auction rather than turning them into drawing room decoration pieces. After all, these bats were signed by the superstars bound to be probable Asia Cup 2018 champions and their worth was now undoubtedly priceless! With this noble cause in mind, the family decided to donate all the proceedings from the auction to the PM & CJ Dam Funds.

This is indeed quite virtuous of the family to have thought this way and to support the Government and Chief Justice in this great cause.

Farrukh has posted his appeal for auction on Twitter under his account “Farrukh47s” and encourages all Pakistanis (within or outside Pakistan) to come forward and participate. 

The first bid has been put up by Farrukh himself at 3000 USD. The bid remaining unbeaten for 3 weeks will ultimately be considered as the winner. The bids can be posted in the increments of 500 USD.

He has taken the responsibility of ensuring that the bats will be cased/framed nicely with details of all the players who have signed them as well as an album of photographs of all the players.

 Once declared, the winner will be asked to deposit the amount directly to the PM & CJ Fund and after the transaction has been verified by the State Bank of Pakistan, Farrukh will personally bring the bats to the winning bidders possibly hosting a small ceremony around it as well.

This is certainly a commendable effort by the family. We, as Pakistanis, should not only praise the efforts they are putting in to follow through with this cause but also pray for their resounding success.

Pakistan Zindabad!