WCL Championship December 8, 2017

Adnan Mufti hundred in bizarre UAE victory

ESPNcricinfo staff

UAE 195 (Mufti 104, Kami 5-27) beat Nepal 132 (Malla 42, Javed 3-23) by 63 runs
Scorecard

© Getty Images

UAE endured seven single-digit scores in Abu Dhabi and made only 195 but they still managed to beat Nepal in a thriller. And here are the highlights: UAE failed to reach 200 despite one of their batsmen scoring a century. It was actually the first of Adnan Mufti's List A career and his 104 off 89 balls looked to have come in a losing cause until his team-mates swindled seven wickets for 42 runs to bowl Nepal out for 132.

Such a conclusion to this game looked fairly implausible with fast bowler Sompal Kami tearing through UAE with his maiden five-wicket haul in List A matches. The score was 39 for 5 when Mufti joined Mohammad Boota (37 off 73) at the crease and together they willed it up to 119. Mufti was 51 then. Another wicket fell in the 43rd over with the score on 140 and that's when Mufti kicked things up. He hammered Sandeep Lamichhane for two fours and a six. Suddenly his score read 86 off 78. Then he crashed Lalit Bhandari for a four and a six and eventually secured a memorable hundred, off only 87 deliveries.

Such an innings tends to add to the adrenaline of the side when they come back to bowl. But Nepal weathered it well and were on course for victory. They were 90 for 3 with opener Gyanendra Malla still at the crease. Legspinner Imran Haider changed that with a double-wicket over. Nepal were 91 for 5. Left-arm spinner Ahmed Raza and fast bowler Mohammad Naveed knocked over three more batsman to yank the score down from 121 for 5 to 122 for 8. Ten runs later, the game was done.

Scotland 266 for 8 (Coetzer 121, Ringera 3-60) beat Kenya 105 (Sole 4-24) by 161 runs
Scorecard

Kyle Coetzer cuts behind point to move into the 90s © Peter Della Penna

Kyle Coetzer made 121 off 130 deliveries in Dubai and so dominant was his Scotland team that Kenya couldn't even match his own score much less aim for a target of 267. Seamer Chris Sole picked up 4 for 24 in 10 overs.

Having been put in to bat, Scotland didn't really have much going for them. Their opening partnership was broken within 10 overs. They were three down halfway through the innings and their run-rate was just over four. But Coetzer was still at the crease and all he needed was a partner. Enter Craig Wallace. The 27-year old put on 87 runs with his captain for the fifth wicket to turn an innings that was stopping and starting into something match-winning. For Kenya, Emmanuel Bundi picked up 3 for 60 and Lucas Oluoch finished with 2 for 34.

The chase began with a wicket in the first over, and by the 13th, Kenya were 47 for 6. There were five ducks in the innings and only two of the XI got past 13. New-ball bowlers Safyaan Sharif and Alasdair Evans picked up two wickets each. Spinners Mark Watt and Michael Leask bowled a combined spell of 8-0-27-2.

Hong Kong 323 for 4 (Rath 143, Hayat 89, Reva 2-46) beat PNG 230 (Doriga 89*, Nawaz 4-54) by 93 runs
Scorecard

© Peter Della Penna

Opener Anshuman Rath hit an unbeaten 143 - the highest score by a Hong Kong batsman in ODIs - to underpin his side's highest total. In pursuit of 324, PNG subsided to 230 all out. The 93-run win meant Hong Kong finished third in the standings with 18 points in 14 matches.

After being sent in Hong Kong made a positive start with Jamie Atkinson and Rath adding 84 for the opening partnership. The stand ended in the 19th over when offspinner Asad Vala had Atkinson stumped for 36. Rath, however, was unstoppable: he reached his first fifty off 65 balls and brought up his second off 56 balls. He added 142 for the second wicket with captain Babar Hayat, who struck 89 off 80 balls, before he was stumped, too, in the 43rd over. Nizakat Khan was run out for 1 in the same over and Tanwir Afzal fell four overs later, but Rath stayed firm to propel the total beyond 300.

Hong Kong began their defence strongly as well: they reduced PNG to 90 for 6 by the 21st over. Kiplin Dogia and John Reva then counterattacked, adding 61 for the seventh wicket in only 55 balls. Doriga then combined with Alei Nao to add 69 for the ninth wicket, but all it did was to reduce the margin of defeat rather than threaten Hong Kong's tall score. Ehsan Nawaz, the quick, was the pick of the bowlers for Hong Kong with career-best figures of 4 for 54. Ehsan Khan and Nadeem Ahmed picked up two wickets each to complement him as PNG were bowled out in 42.2 overs.

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