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Three of the semi-finalists were decided on the fourth day of the ACC Twenty20 Cup, with the three unbeaten teams - Afghanistan, Oman and UAE - all progressing to the last four.
UAE grabbed the headlines with a 209-run rout of the hapless China side, the biggest margin in a representative Twenty20 match. UAE made 236 for 5 and then bundled out China for 27, 15 of which were extras. In a week Australia’s chief executive claimed the ICC would be better off promoting cricket in China than in some existing Associates, it again highlighted the yawning chasm between the hopes of those running the game and the reality of the side itself.
Afghanistan bowled out Saudi Arabia for 72 to win by nine wickets, but Oman were made to struggle more, even so they beat Malaysia by 35 runs after posting 197 for 5. Nepal’s stop-start tournament continued with a six-wicket win over Qatar.
The closest game was between Hong Kong and Singapore where Singapore scraped home by one wicket off the penultimate ball.
The individual performance of the round came from Kuwait’s Khalid Butt who smashed 142 off 53 deliveries, including ten sixes, in his team’s nine-wicket win over Bahrain.
Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and AfricaFeeds: Martin Williamson
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Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.