Dubai: UAE all-rounder Ali Naseer continued his impressive from to give his team a second win, a five-wicket victory over Kuwait, in the Twenty20 World Cup Asia Qualifier final in Nepal on Tuesday.
Teenager Naseer, who shone with the bat against Bahrain on Monday, claimed two wickets, including skipper Mohammad Aslam, to reduce Kuwait 88 for eight in 20 overs. Pacers Junaid Siddique, Zahoor Khan and left-arm spinner Nilansh Keswani all claimed two wickets a piece as Kuwait finished their innings.
In reply, skipper Muhammad Waseem gave the UAE a breezy start, but his wicket caused a mini collapse with UAE losing three quick wickets, slipping from 55 for one to 62 for four. Another youngster Alishan Sharafu played a crucial knock of 16 to take UAE closer to victory with another all-rounder Basil Hameed finishing it off with a six. Kuwait skipper Aslam claimed three wickets to give UAE a scare in a low-scoring clash.
The UAE are topping the Group B table with four points after two wins, followed by Bahrain, who defeated Hong Kong. A victory against Hong Kong on Thursday should ease UAE into the semi-finals, and take them closer to the Twenty20 World Cup, to be held in the West Indies and USA next year.
In Group A, table-toppers Oman and Nepal have maintained their winning runs to set-up a all-win clash on Thursday.