UAE rout New Zealand in second T20, keep series alive - GulfToday

UAE rout New Zealand in second T20, keep series alive


UAE's Muhammad Waseem plays a shot during their second T20 cricket match with New Zealand at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Saturday. AFP

Mohammad Abdullah, Senior Sports Reporter

Mohammad Waseem (55) smacked a whirlwind fifty after Aaayan Afzal Khan took three wickets as the UAE routed  New Zealand by seven wickets in the second T20 match to register their one of the biggest international win in Dubai on Saturday.

After restricting New Zealand to 142/8, UAE achieved the target for the loss of three wickets with more than four overs to spare to keep the three-match series alive.

With the emphatic victory against one of the oldest Test playing nations, UAE have once again proven their mettle in the international cricket. The UAE cricketers showed that they do not lack talent but opportunity and exposure. This victory will go down in the history books as one of the biggest triumphs.

Riding on the superb bowling performances of Aayan Khan and Muhammad Jawadullah, UAE restricted New Zealand to a modest total of 142/8.

Chasing, UAE got off to a disastrous start as they the first wicket with 0 runs on the board. Aryansh Sharma, the hero of the last match, was dismissed for a golden duck. Southee had him caught by Neesham.

Captain Waseem and Vriitya Arvind knuckled down to mend the innings. They shared a 40-runs stand for the second wicket to anchor the innings.

They kept the scoreboard ticking with singles and doubles, hitting occasional boundaries to keep the asking run rate under control as they set the tone for a successful chase.

When they were looking set to take their team through, Jamieson rattled the stumps of Arvind to bring respite to the New Zealand camp.

After the departure of Arvind, Waseem changed the gears and started hitting the New Zealand bowlers all over the ground. He also shared 56-run stand with Asif Khan to take the score to 96/2.

He was caught by Southee off Santner at extra cover while trying to hit a lofted shot. Waseem hit four boundaries and three sixes.

When Waseem got, UAE still needed 47 runs of 54 balls. Asif held his nerves and played sensibly, taking the match as deep as possible along with Baseel Hamid. Asif hit Neesahm for 13 runs in the 15th over to remove the pressure. In the next over, he collected another 16 runs to take the UAE over the line.  Asif remained unbeaten on 48 and smashed five fours and one six while Baseel scored a vital 12 in as many deliveries.

Earlier, Aayan Khan wreaked a havoc to give UAE a dream start. He wiped off the top order. It was Jawadullah, who triggered the collapse by getting rid of Tim Seifert to give the UAE first breakthrough with just 14 runs on the board.

New Zealand batsmen – Chad Bowes and Mitchell Santner – were treading cautiously to recover from the early damage. Hardly had they brought the things under control, with a watchful 13-run stand in a bid to bring some stability to the innings, Aayan Khan struck twice in quick succession. He ripped through the top-order.

In the fifth over of the innings, Aayan got rid of Santner. He rattled the stumps of the New Zealand batter for his first scalp of the match.  On the next delivery, Aayan struck another blow as he sent back Dane Cleaver. The wily spinner uprooted the stumps of Celaver to reduce New Zealand to 27/3.

New Zealand were in deep trouble and needed someone to play a sheet-anchor role to revive the faltering innings. But they could not recover and kept on losing the wickets at regular intervals.

Bowes and Mark Champman had the onus to stop the rot and bring New Zealand out of rut with a big partnership. But Aayn had different plans. He struck once again 11 balls later to leave New Zealand tottering at 38/4.

With the top order back in pavilion, New Zealand’s hopes of reviving the inning was becoming feeble. Champman was waging the lone battle single-handedly.

He got down to stitch the innings. He shared a couple of good partnership to bring New Zealand innings back on track. He added 27 runs for the fifth wicket with Cole McConchie, taking the score 65. But every time New Zealand tried to take a step forward, they were pegged two steps back by the UAE bowlers.

Mohammad Farazuddin had McConchie caught by Ansh Tandon to pick up his first wicket of the match, leaving New Zealand in tatters.

Champman kept his cool and played sensibly. He along with James Neesham added 53 runs for the sixth wicket to take the score to a fighting total. Ali Naseer broke the dangerous partnership. Jawadullah trapped Rachin Ravindra to return with a figure of 2/16 from his four overs as New Zealand mustered 142/8.


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