Dubai: The UAE got off to a flying start in the ICC Asia Under-19s World Cup Qualifier on Friday. Restricting hosts Malaysia to 206 in 48.4 overs, the UAE won by five wickets with 17 balls to spare through a strong all-round performance at the Kinrara Academy Oval in Kuala Lumpur.
Skipper Aryan Lakra showed the way through a three-wicket spell, well backed by vice-captain Palaniapan Meiyappan and Rishabh Mukherjee with two wickets each.
Chasing the score, UAE opener Syed Haider top-scored with 62 runs off 91 balls with eight boundaries. Wicketkeeper Vriitya Aravind had a great day hitting a quick 35 runs off 42 balls with six boundaries and also producing three stumpings. Haider and Aravind had put on 72 runs for the second wicket. Haider fell at the UAE score on 126 but Alishan Sharafu with timely support from Ansh Tandon (23) and Osama Hassan (21) steered the team to the target.
Sharafu remained unbeaten on 42 off 54 balls with four boundaries and one six.
Speaking to Gulf News after the match, Lakra said: “It is always good to start with a win though we did not get the best of starts with the ball. Our spinners got us back into the game. The batters did a wonderful job chasing a tricky target. We need to improve a few areas before our next game tomorrow against Nepal.”
Earlier, Malaysia won the toss and elected to bat. Lakra struck the first blow by clean bowling opener Daniel Fikry for nine. Opener Aslam Khan, who hit a quick 35 off 32 balls with seven boundaries, fell to leg spinner Meiyappan.
Two wickets down for 51 in nine overs, captain Mohammad Amir kept the score board moving with Mohammad Irfaq by adding 37 runs for the third wicket. UAE’s Rishabh Mukherjee had Irfaq stumped by wicketkeeper Vriitya Aravind for 11. Amir then added 59 runs for the fourth wicket with Wan Amirul before Mukherjee struck again to have Amir stumped by Aravind for 54 off 67 balls with six boundaries. Amirul went on to hit 47 runs before being caught and bowled by Akasha Tahir. Aravind produced his third stumping to get rid of Vijay Unni off Lakra. Lakra then had last man Amirul Syahmi caught and bowled, to return with figures of three for 31.
UAE bt Malaysia by five wickets. Malaysia 206 in 48.4 overs (Aslam Khan 35, Mohammad Amir 54, Wan Amirul 47, Palaniapan Meiyappan 2 for 34, Aryan Lakra 3 for 31, Rishabh Mukherjee 2 for 41) UAE 208 for 5 in 47.1 overs (Syed Haider 62, Vriitya Aravind 35, Alishan Sharafu 42n.o, Ansh Tandon 23, Osama Hassan 21) Man of the match: Syed Haider