Dubai: The UAE reached the final of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) Western Region T20 tournament with an unbeaten run in Oman. In the semi-final, UAE defended a modest 122 against Qatar to pull off an exciting-28 run victory.
Earlier, the UAE had beaten Iran, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia to reach semi-final.
Electing to bat first, the UAE lost their consistent opener Rohan Mustafa for nine runs. Next man Basil Hameed got trapped leg before for two. Young wicketkeeper Vriitya Anand (18) and opener Chirag Suri added 40 runs for the third wicket.
Qatar’s right-arm medium pacer struck repeatedly to take four for 16 from his four overs to prevent UAE from posting a big total. Suri topscored with 38 runs, while lower-order batsman Sultan Ahmad hit 18 to give UAE a fighting total.
Chasing the target, Qatar kept losing wickets at regular intervals. Junaid Siddiqui and Zahoor Khan removed the first three batsmen for 17 runs in five overs. Captain Ahmad Raza took two wickets to push Qatar to 43 for six. Siddiqui produced a deadly spell of four for 12, backed by Zahoor with three for 17 and bowled out Qatar for 94 in 20 overs.
UAE will now take on Kuwait in the final on Thursday. Kuwait defeated Bahrain by 87 runs in the first semi-final. UAE had earlier beaten Kuwait by 47 runs and so go into the final as favourites to lift the trophy.