By Roshan Yadav And Harry Yadav
A cricket Aficionado and ink slinger
Final: Hong Kong Vs United Arab Emirates
It all started in the favour of Hong Kong as they won the toss in Kinara Oval ground of Bandra and asked UAE to bat first overcast conditions. Asked to bat first UAE got off to a good start. Ashfaq Ahmed was timing the ball well from ball one through his partner in crime Chirag Suri was not looking in good touch.
After 53 for no loss in 12.1 overs, 19 balls later UAE find themselves in big trouble as scorecard read 65 for 3. Struggling opener Chirag Suri,Captain Rohan Mustafa and Rameez Sahazad departed on chef score in this quick succession thanks to disciplined bowling of Aizaz Khan and Nadeem Ahmed.
Real drama begin on 16th over when god Indra stopped match for more than 3 hours. The game was cut down to 24 over a side after rain said ta-ta. With little support from Anwar, Mufti, Muhammad and lower order batsmen Ashfaq Ahmed took UAE total to a 176-9 in 24 overs.
Ashfaq Ahmed was highest Scorer for UAE with his 51 ball 79 (includes 6 sixes and 9 fours). Aizaz khan was hero of the first inning for Hong Kong as he pick up 5-28 to restrict UAE on a par total.
Chasing the DL adjusted target of 179 , Hong Kong openers Nizakat khan and captain Anshuman Rath started in blazing fashion and utilizes the powerplay as they made 64 runs in 6 overs.
Like their counter part in first inning Hong Kong too fumble in middle overs find themself in similar position as their best batsman Babar Hayat and both openers were in the hunt at the end of 10 over.
Then after Carter and Eshan khan hold their nerve and added 53 runs for 5th wicket. This partnership get Hong Kong back in the game. UAE through make a decent comeback by removing Eshan and Carter in the interval of 10 runs. But all goes in Vain as Scott and Nawaz hold their nerves and take Hong Kong to final berth of Asia Cup 2018.
With this 2 wicket win Hong Kong will be playing asiangiant India and Pakistan two weeks later in main draw of Asia Cup 2018. Hong Kong, who lost their odi status earlier this year get another good news few hour after their win as ICC and ACC awarded Hong Kong odi status for the Asia Cup.
It was great moment for Hong Kong but for UAE it was big setback as Asia cup will be held in UAE this time.