The ongoing Asian Cricket Council Asia Cup qualifiers has yet again shown on why the T20 format should not be the lone format for the governing body to emphasise on for growing the sport in the Associate member countries. Exposure in 50-overs format is as much important to be emphasised on for not only ensure that Associate members are well versed with the format, but also to have respective Cricket Boards invest in the format back home in domestic circuits.
While Oman, languishing in World Cricket League Division 3, have shown their might so far by winning all their opening three matches including victories over Hong Kong and ODI status accredited Nepal, Hong Kong turned the tables in a big mighty way above the tournament favourites, UAE, to open wide the tournament points table and prospects for team’s vying to secure a spot in the final.
The massive margin of defeat is not what UAE would have liked to see on their overall net run-rate in the points table, but with Nepal also registering their first win in the tournament (albeit a very unconvincing one over the host’s Malaysia), UAE will feel a bit pressured now, as their final two matches will be against Malaysia and Oman.
Nepal still have all to do in their final two matches and hope that other results also go their way to have any chance to make it to the finals, which on 06th Sep 2018, will be televised live on Start Sports network and on Star’s digital app, Hotstar platform as well.
2018 Asia Cup Qualifiers Points Table:
Singapore in 215/8 in 50 overs (Rohan Rangarajan 68, Anish Paraam 77, Bilal Khan 4/40) lost to Oman 216/2 in 26.4 overs (Aaqib Sulehri 108, Jatinder Singh 53, Khawar Ali 36 n.o) by 8 wickets
Nepal 188/7 in 30 overs (Dipendra Singh Airee 54, Aarif Sheikh 64 n.o, Syazrul Idrus 3/27, Sharvin Muniandy 3/50) beat Malaysia 169/9 in 30 overs (Anwar Arudin 34, Syed Aziz Syed Mubarak 34, Basant Regmi 3/36, Sandeep Lamichhane 2/20) by 19 runs
Hong Kong 275/8 in 49 overs (Anshuman Rath 102, Babar Hayat 107, Imran Haider 3/58, Rohan Mustafa 3/55) beat UAE 93 all out in 24.5 overs (Rohan Mustafa 33, Ehsan Khan 4/17, Ehsan Nawaz 2/12, Nadeem Ahmed 2/18) by 182 runs