Dubai: Veteran all-rounder Rohan Mustafa guided UAE to a comfortable 68-run win over Nepal in the tri-series of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup League 2 clash at the Dubai international Stadium on Thursday.
Former skipper Mustafa scored an unbeaten 52 to give the hosts a good total to defend after opener Asif Khan fired the first salvo with an impressive 72 after losing the dependable Muhammad Waseem for nought. Asif played a crucial role, holding one end up and also keeping the scoreboard moving in the company of Vriitya Aravind and skipper CP Rizwan.
Asif and Mustafa put on a 40-run partnership for the fourth wicket before the opener became one of Sandeep Lamichhane’s three victims. Mustafa and Arayan Lakra added a 58-run seventh-wicket partnership that took UAE past the 200-run mark.
The visitors were never in the chase after being down 54 for four and barring a fighting knock from Kushal Malla (60) and a late cameo from Lamichhane, Nepal would have been way too behind.
Pacers Junaid Siddique, Zahoor Khan and Sabir Ali grabbed the first four wickets while leg-spinner Karthik Meiyappan and Mustafa shared the rest, three wickets each.