DUBAI: Daniyal Shakeel bagged five wickets to inspire Phoenix Medicines to a narrow one-run win over Abu Dhabi Gymkhana in a low-scoring quarter-final match of the Dubai Cricket Council’s (DCC) 50-overs Elite Cup played at the Fairground Oval.
Opting to bat first on winning the toss, Phoenix mustered up only 138. Abu Dhabi Gymkhana should have won this match hands down, but the batsmen undid all the good work done by their bowlers.
Except for Ali Azmat, who struck a half century and Irfan Haider who contributed 25, the rest fell like nine pins to some superb bowling from man of the match Daniyal (5 for 23) and Asif Mumtaz (3 for 25).
Phoenix got off to a fairly good start with Fahad Ansari and Hafiz Kaleem putting on 25 runs. Then there was a sudden collapse and Phoenix were soon stuttering at 7 for 93.
Kaleem top-scored for his team with 39 but it was Asif Mumtaz (21) and Mohd. Khalil who got some crucial runs in the end which made the difference.
Adeel Raza, Jamshed Ahmed, Zeeshan Ahmed and Irfan Haider bowled well for Abu Dhabi Gymkhana with each claiming a pair of wickets.
However, Asif Mumtaz was not done yet. He returned to remove both the openers and put the gymkhana side on the back foot. Daniyal took over from there and it was mayhem as wicket after wicket kept falling.
Ali Azmat fought all odds to keep them in the chase with three sixes and six boundaries but he too perished to Daniyal after a well-made 56 from 50 balls. His wicket brought the curtains on Abu Dhabi Gymkhana’s pursuit of entering the last four of the prestigious tournament.