Final (3:00 PM-4:00 PM) Sunday, Jun 8, 2008
  1 2 T
Falaq (2-6-0) 12 13 25
Nas (7-1-0) 19 44 63

Nas takes care of business with strong second half to advance Jun 10, 2008
by Zuhair Fancy  

The preview for this game was simple, the number one seed in Nas versus the eighth seed in Falaq. Falaq has never beaten Nas in three attempts including last yearís playoff match-up. The most damage Falaq has ever done was accidentally injuring Nas centre Mahmood Qasim in their playoff game last season which crippled Nasí playoff run.

With the temperature in the gym heating up, the stamina for the teams clearly seemed to be going down. Nas showed up with their full roster meaning that it would be difficult to wear them down with a deep bench. Falaq on the other hand only arrived with six players meaning they had to pace themselves and stay out of foul trouble.

The game started with Nas flying as Uzair Ansari first drilled a corner three before completing a breakaway lay-up to put his team up 8-0 with 13 minutes to play in the half. Falaq responded with a run of their own and with five minutes left they were only down 11-9. However the aggressive play that brought them back into the game seemed to be getting them into trouble as Omar Taleb picked up his third foul and the wrong words earned him a technical foul. With a short bench and trying to stay in the game he continued playing but trying to keep his emotions in check.

The half ended with Nas up 19-12 but Falaq seemed to be breaking down. Nas was led by Ansari with 7 points and Khalid Deeb with 5 points. Falaq was led by Sammy Rafai with 4 points.

The second half saw Nas blow the game open with a 12-0 run which forced Falaq to call a timeout with 15:26 left and now down 31-12. To compound the problems for Falaq was that during the Nas run, Taleb picked up his fifth foul and left his team with no substitutes. Nas pressed on and called a timeout with 10:45 left and up 44-18. Tempers seemed to be flaring as well as players on both teams began to trash talk as Falaq did not seem to appreciate Nas continuing to pile on the points.

The game ended with Nas winning by a 63-25 final score. They were led by Ansari with 19 points while Deeb finished with 17 points. Falaq was led by Rafai with 14 points which included a three for four performance from beyond the arc.

Nas dominated a game they were expected to win but shot a poor 8 for 24 from the free throw line, something they will want to correct to ensure they take advantage of their opportunities in the game. With the win Nas will now move on to face Kursi in the semi-finals.