The cricketing world is familiar with the name Sialkot Stallions. The team with the best unbeaten streak in T20 cricket to date, but only a few know about their biggest rivals, Karachi Dolphins. A team that was branded as the representative of Blind Indus River Dolphins and the financial hub of Pakistan, became the unluckiest team to play T20 cricket.
Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) became one of the first cricket boards to introduce a domestic T20 cricket tournament in 2005. 11 Teams were formed to compete in the first edition of the tournament. This was the birth of T20 cricket in Pakistan.
Karachi got two teams, one got the light blue shade and the affiliation of Zebra, while the other became the dark blue owners of Dolphins.
Alongside Karachi, Lahore also got two teams having Lions and Eagles in their names. Sialkot Stallions, Faisalabad Wolves, Rawalpindi Rams, Multan Tigers, Quetta Bears, Hyderabad Hawks and Peshawar Panthers were the others who came into existence.
These teams remained a part of Pakistan cricket’s domestic structure till 2015, after which the first-class season was revamped by PCB.
ABN AMRO CUP – 2005
The first tournament had already given a glance at how much potential the team had. Test cricketer Moin Khan being the first captain of the team, led his side to the final of the first National T20 Cup. The team performed exceptionally well and topped the group and triangular stage.
Being so close to the title, Karachi lost to Faisalabad Wolves in the final. This became the start of a culture for which the team will be known for the ages.
Specialist of Losing Finals
It takes special effort for a team consisting of players like Shahid Afridi, Fawad Alam, Muhammad Sami, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Sohail Khan, Khalid Latif, and Khurram Manzoor to reach the final in almost every T20 season and lose it.
Following is a list of T20 tournaments in which the Karachi Dolphins ended up as Runner-Ups:
|2005||ABN AMRO CUP||Faisalabad Wolves|
|2006||ABN AMRO 20-20-Cup||Sialkot Stallions|
|2008||RBS 20-20 Cup||Sialkot Stallions|
|2010||Faysal Bank T-20 Cup||Lahore Lions|
|2011||Faysal Bank Super 8 T-20 Cup||Rawalpindi Rams|
|2012||Faysal Bank Super 8 T-20 Cup||Sialkot Stallions|
The Unlucky Karachi Dolphins
It is still a wonder how a team with such potential, big stars, and huge performance ended up Title-less in its 10-year dance of T20 cricket. Seems as if they were truly portraying the character of Blind Indus Dolphin. A mammal, with a lot of abilities to survive in harsh conditions and go through difficult times, is still somehow able to end up getting caught by rare fishermen roaming hungry around the river.
Just like the KARACHI Dolphins getting caught by the city teams which are near the INDUS River.