Steady Fayyaz steers UAE to win
A steady unbeaten 37 from Fayyaz Ahmed lifted United Arab Emirates from 93 for 7 to a two-wicket win over Hong Kong, their first in the tournament. Chasing 158, UAE's top order of Salman Faris, Khurram Khan and Swapnil Patil were out within 11 overs and the side slipped further when Irfan Ahmed broke a steady 48-run stand between Shaiman Anwar and Amjad Ali. At 93 for 7 in the 30th over, the middling target looked tough for UAE but Fayyaz struck useful partnerships with lower-order batsmen, Ahmed Raza and Mohammad Naveed, that eventually saw them to victory in the 49th over. Earlier, a middle-order stutter restricted Hong Kong to 157 in spite of a brisk start provided by Irfan Ahmed who hit four fours and a six in his 35-ball 30. Mohammad Shahzad and Kamran Shazad shared seven wickets between them as Hong Kong were dismissed in the 46th over.
Oman survived a batting collapse to register their third straight win of the tournament, beating Nepal by two wickets. The victory left Oman perched at the top of the ACC Premier League table with six points, and in a very healthy position to advance to the ACC Championship. Set 158 to win, Oman were comfortably placed at 87 for 2 thanks to opener Zeeshan Maqsood's 44, but they lost their next six wickets for just 39 runs and stumbled to 126 for 8 as Shakti Gauchan, Sompal Kami and Paras Khadka wrecked the team's middle order. However, Aamir Kaleem and the captain Sultan Ahmed forged an unbroken stand of 35 runs for the ninth wicket to take Oman home with 13 deliveries to spare. Oman had earlier inserted Nepal and did well to bowl them out for 157 in 45 overs. Most of Nepal's batsmen made starts, but none could produce a fifty. Kaleem was the pick of Oman's bowlers and finished with 4 for 36, while Maqsood and left-arm spinner Ajay Lalcheta snared two wickets apiece.
Offspinner Khizar Hayat's 4 for 29 restricted Afghanistan to 175 before knocks from captain Ahmed Faiz and Shafiq Sharif set up Malaysia's three-wicket win, their first in the Premier League. Afghanistan had a solid start but Hayat thwarted them with six-over spell, where he accounted for the top three batsmen. The rest of the line-up failed to fire as Afghanistan were all out in 46 overs. Malaysia had a sprightly start despite an early wicket as opener Anwar Arudin charged the Afghanistan attack, striking six fours off Shapoor Zadran in his 18-ball 34. Faiz started off in the same vein but settled with a comfortable 57-run stand between Faiz and Sharif. Malaysia lost quick wickets as they approached the target but Afghanistan had too few on the board for the bowlers to make an impact and the batting side eventually achieved the target with three wickets to spare.