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UAE Women surprise China with five-over masterclass

The Player of the Match from UAE v China.
Results from the opening day of the qualifying stages of the Women's World T20 in Thailand.

United Arab Emirates women’s cricket team are making their debut in the qualifying stages of the ICC Women’s World T20 but they played some quality cricket against China in a match reduced to five overs TCG in Bangkok and were deserved winners by 16 runs.

Thailand are hosting the 2018 ICC Women’s World T20 Asia Qualifier and Hong Kong were the other winners on the opening day as they fought back to beat Malaysia by 35 runs at AIT. The afternoon match at TCG between Thailand and Nepal finished as a no-result after 3.4 overs of the second innings.

There had been some heavy overnight rain in Bangkok and play was delayed in the China v UAE match while wet patches were attended to and the contest was eventually reduced to five overs aside. UAE captain Humaria Tasneen won the toss and confidently elected to bat first as her team did not want to change their strategy with the reduction in the overs. She explained afterwards that her team had made plans to score at eight runs per over and then restrict the opposition to five runs an over and her players carried out their instructions to perfection as UAE scored 40 for one in five overs and restricted China to 24 for two to win by 16 runs. The UAE openers provided the perfect start as Esha Oza and Udeni Kuruppuarachchi both went for their shots and each hit a pair of fours, while the Chinese batters could not reach the boundary during their innings.

This was a historic day for women’s cricket in the United Arab Emirates as they won their first match in an official ICC competition and they had beaten China who had been one of the powerhouses of women’s cricket at this level who had reached the ICC Women’s T20 Qualifier when it was last played in 2015. UAE’s cricketing standards are clearly rising as they have been successful in several Gulf events and recently held their own seven-team international competition.

Hong Kong had looked in trouble against Malaysia at AIT when they were reduced to 24 for five as Zayani Syamimi returned the excellent figures of four for 13 before wicket-keeper Jenefer Davies led a recovery as she hit 29 during a sixth-wicket partnership of 47 with Sze Wan Yip. A final total of 77 for 7 in 20 meant that Malaysia still had high hopes of recording a win but they were bowled out for 42 as Hong Kong were excellent in the field. They claimed three run outs and bowled tightly as Chan Sau Har and Marina Lamplough both recorded figures of two for eight to give Hong Kong victory by 35 runs.

In the third match of the day Thailand faced Nepal at TCG and the hosts were looking to make a good start to their campaign. The Thai girls were given a stiff test by Nepal as they lost five wickets for 42 before recovering to 90 for six in their 20 overs thanks to an unbeaten 23 from Naruemol Chaiwai. The sky was darkening as Nepal started their chase and rain finally intervened after 3.4 overs with the score on 10 for no wicket. Players and officials remained at the ground but the chances of a resumption looked bleak and the umpires finally called off the match with both sides gaining one point.

It had been wet start to the competition but UAE and Hong Kong are the early pace-setters and there is the promise of plenty of competitive women’s cricket to come in the next week.

For results, live scores and information on the 2018 ICC Women’s World Twenty20 Qualifier - Asia please go to:

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