By Sports Reporter/Doha
A disciplined bowling effort followed by cautious batting down the order ensured that Qatar held their nerves in a few edgy moments to register their third victory in the ICC World T20 Asia Qualifier A in Kuwait City yesterday.
At the Sulabiya Cricket Ground, Qatar limited Saudi Arabia to 135 for seven in the allotted 20 overs after putting them to bat first. Qatar’s Nouman Sarwar and Mohamed Nadeem picked up two wickets each.
In reply, Qatar opener Faisal Javid Khan gave a quick start yet again with an eight-ball 18 but fell in the third over with the score at 27. The same over skipper Inam-ul-Haq (8) too was sent back to the pavilion. Kamran Khan was sent back in the fifth over with the scoreboard reading 39 for 3.
However, Tamoor Sajjad and Zaheer Ibrahim, both scoring 27-ball 35, stitched together a 60-run partnership before the latter became first three quick wickets that fell for just 10 runs, slowing down the flow of runs.
However, an unbroken seventh-wicket alliance between Khurram Shahzad and Sarwar saw them through with seven balls to spare.
In other matches of the day, the United Arab Emirates beat Maldives by 43 runs to maintain their position at the top of the standings with four wins in as many matches, while Kuwait defeated Bahrain by 23 runs.
Qatar’s team manager Gul Khan Jadoun was palpably pleased after his team’s triumph. “This was a very important match for us. By God’s grace, we won by four wickets and are now in line for a No 1 spot playoff against the UAE.
“The entire team worked hard for the victory. We bowled well to contain Saudi Arabia to a modest total. Our batsmen applied themselves well on the turning track and held off the opponents,” he added.
“Our next match is against Bahrain on Thursday. We’ll try to use the rest day (Wednesday) for preparing a good strategy so that we stay focussed and on the track to be either No 1 or 2 in the event,” Jadoun said.
BRIEF SCORES: Saudi Arabia 135 for 7 in 20 overs (Shahbaz Rasheed 36, Faisal Khan 29; Nouman Sarwar 2 for 21, Mohamed Nadeem 2 for 37) lost to Qatar 136 for 6 in 18.5 overs (Tamoor Sajjad 35, Zaheer Ibrahim 35; Imran Arif 3 for 33) by 4 wickets.
Man of the Match: Tamoor Sajjad (Qatar, 1 wicket for 29, 35 runs)
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