Dubai: UAE skipper Theertha Satish and Lavanya Keny ensured the team got off to the best possible start in the International Cricket Council’s Under-19 Women’s T20 Cricket World Cup Asia Qualifier with a thumping 160-run win over Bhutan at Kinrara Oval in Malaysia on Friday.
Theertha and Lavanya, the youngest in the team, put on a 185-run opening partnership that propelled the team to 202 in 20 overs. Theertha narrowly missed the century by six runs, her 94 contatining 15 boundaries, while Lavanya remained unbeaten on 67.
“It was a great start and amazing innings from both openers. Very proud of the girls and the way they performed, setting a very high standards for UAE,” coach Najeeb Amer told Gulf News from Malaysia.
Bhutan, in their chase, never got their chase going and were restricted to 42 for seven in 20 overs with nine of the UAE bowlers, barring Theertha and wicketkeeper Sanchin Singh, not turning their arms over. Siya Gokhale and Rishitha Rajith claimed two wickets each.
Speaking about the performances, Theertha said: “It’s a good start and we take the confidence to the other matches well. It’s always feels good to contribute to team’s victory and, hopefully, we will be able to continue in the other matches. Everyone’s inputs and efforts helped in this game and we hope to win the other games.”
The 14-member UAE will be taking on Nepal, Qatar, Thailand and hosts Malaysia in their bid to secure the top spot in the Asia Qualifier and subsequently a place in the ICC Under-19 Women’s CWC 2023.
Thailand and Nepal win
In the other matches, Thailand and Nepal powered to big wins on the opening day of the qualifiers.
A 69-run partnership for the fourth wicket between Thipatcha Putthawong (32 off 32 balls) and Sunida Chaturongrattana (28 not out off 24 balls) propelled Thailand to 133 for four before Nanthita Boonsukham picked up five wickets to help bowl Malaysia out for 48 in 13.4 overs to help Thailand win by a 85-run margin.
Shristi Jaisi scored an unbeaten 23 off 19 balls to push Nepal up to 117/3 before she picked up three wickets for five runs in her four-over spell to help bowl Qatar out for 38 to give Nepal 79-run win.