BANNU - Shahid Khan Afridi's 16-ball 45 runs knock enabled Afridi XI to 31-run victory against DG ISPR XI in a friendly cricket fund raising match played here at Baka Khel IDPs camp for the IDPs of North Waziristan Agency.

Afridi hit cracking three boundaries and two sixes to steer his team, consists of IDPs youth, to a thumping victory. The 10-over match was organised at Bannu's Baka Khel IDPs camp where Pakistan T20 skipper Afridi led his team against ISPR XI, led by Lt Col Asghar.

Afridi XI, batting first, piled up 88-run total in the allotted 10 for the loss of seven wickets with Afridi smashing all bowlers toward the boundary and receiving thundering applauses from the capacity cricket enthusiasts present on this occasion. Afridi faced 16 balls and played a cracking knock of 45 runs including three boundaries and two sixes. Aamir Aziz took two wickets for DG ISPR XI.

DG ISPR Maj Gen Asim Bajwa was also there and witnessed the thrill-packed match and supported the players. Besides raising money for rehabilitation of IDPs, the rare friendly match provided locals and IDPs a chance of entertainment and recreation.

In reply, DG ISPR XI batting line up tumbled down, losing seven wickets for 57 runs only as none of the batsmen could stand in front of excellent bowling by Afridi and his teammates. Afridi took two wickets.

Speaking to media, DG Asim Bajwa said: “Afridi is a living legend and IDPs love all cricket players of the country. It was the demand of the IDPs that Afridi must be called in the camp for a cricket match. The people of North Waziristan are talented and cricket lovers."

Bajwa hoped that the friendly match would help discover new talented cricketers even in the IDPs camp as a good number of young players are there along with their families.

Talking to media, Afridi said: “There is no dearth of talent and it is our responsibility to provide much-needed exposure to them besides providing them a due facility.” He lauded the efforts being put in by Pakistan Army to have playing field in which a pitch has prepared only to indulge the youth of IDPs in healthy sports activities.

Afridi said he had chalked out a plan to have two cricket academies - one each in Kohat and Peshawar. The academies will have qualified coaches for polishing the budding youngsters. At the end, Afridi and DG ISPR Maj Gen Asim Bajwa gave away trophies and cash prizes to the winners and runners-up.