Final (1:00 PM-2:00 PM) Sunday, Jan 20, 2008
  1 2 T
Fatiha (7-1-0) 30 28 58
Zilzal (1-7-0) 24 17 41

Fatiha Dumps Zilzal Again Jan 23, 2008
by Kashif Taqiuddin  

The last time these two teams got together wasn’t long ago. In fact it was just the week before when they played their final regular season game against each other. They game had a bit of a circus atmosphere as Zilzal was shorthanded and Fatiha was focused on chasing rebounding title. This game was more serious but the only difference was the appearance of the Othman brothers for Zilzal. Much was expected from older brother Rami to contribute on the offense and keep Zilzal in the race.

The opening half was pretty slow for these two teams standard. Fatiha had the lead but wasn’t dominating the glass like they used to. Five minutes in the game and Zilzal finally scored their first basket trailing 10-2. From that point on it was a game. Fatiha did a great job rotating and distributing the ball. Most of their players were able to share in the scoring but it was Martin Konecny that led the team in the half with 11 points. The always vocal captain Teepu Khawja could be heard all over the floor shouting to his teammates whenever Zilzal would switch from man coverage to zone. Zilzal, however, was just as aggressive and always stayed in pace within 5-8 points. Shareef Sabree and Bilal Forde sank back to back triples to cut the lead to 4 but foul trouble kept the team from catching up any further and gave Fatiha plenty of opportunities to make free throws and eat the clock. The half time score was 30-24. Ferhan Khan and Sabree did much of the scoring for Zilzal and looked to carry that into the second half.

As mentioned much was expected from Rami Othman to score some big baskets. In the first half Rami slashed his way down the centre of the lane through two defenders for a pretty lay up to score his first basket. His team energized and hoping there would be more of that to come? What did Rami do next? Umm.. absolutely nothing. No more baskets.. not a single rebound, unable to get to the free throw line and couldn’t sink a triple. He was absolutely neutered in this match. There goes the “X” factor… But no blame can be placed on poor Rami. He wasn’t getting enough touches and his boys weren’t passing the ball as much. His teammates also went cold in the second half much of which can be contributed to Fatiha’s superb defensive game. Sabree tried to take much on his own but made things just weren’t falling his way on this day. Fatiha was on their game and scoring continued to come from all angles of the floor. With Zilzal slumping the lead continued to grow to a point where there was no catching up. All hopes were washed away when Ark fouled out with 6 minutes remaining. Shortly after Ferhan fouled out as well and that was the ball game. Zilzal was bounced by Fatiha 58-41.

Shareef Sabree led all scorers with 17 points while Martin Konecny led his team with 16 points. Surprisingly with all of the rebounding talent on these two squads nobody was able to reach double digits. Again it was Sabree coming out on top leading all players with 8 baords.

Zilzal is done. Ark’s ship has set sail and there will be much to contemplate but not enough time as the new season is just around the corner. Fatiha is still firing on all cyindars and it will be fun to see how they take on their next task.