UAE vs Hong Kong:-Hong Kong defeated UAE by 8 wickets in a thrilling match on Wednesday to qualify for the group stage of Asia Cup 2022. They remained unbeaten during the Asia Cup qualifiers and finished top of the table. Hong Kong will join India and Pakistan in group A, with all six participants now confirmed for the continental tournament.
Having defeated the likes of Singapore and Kuwait earlier in the qualifiers, Nizakat Khan’s Hong Kong needed to ensure a win over UAE to qualify for the group stage. And there were no hiccups as they secured a comprehensive win to extend their stay in Dubai.
Earlier in the day, Kuwait defeated Singapore by six wickets in the other qualifier, but they needed a victory by a big margin to spoil the party. But in the end, Hong Kong proved to be too strong for the UAE side, who had earned the rights to host Asia Cup 2022, after Sri Lanka had surrendered the same, owing to their ongoing economic crisis.
So the group stage is all set with India, Pakistan and Hong Kong set to battle it out in group A, while Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Sri Lanka were already confirmed in group B.
Two teams from each group will qualify for the Super 4 round of Asia Cup 2022, with all four teams then playing each other once in round-robin format. The two teams who will finish at the top after the conclusion of Super 4 stage will reach the final of Asia Cup.
Sri Lanka and Afghanistan get things underway on Saturday, August 27, with the final slated to be played on September 11.
Talking about the match between Hong Kong and UAE, Nizakat’s men had won the toss and they chose to bowl first. Captain CP Rizwan (49 off 44) and Zawar Farid (41 off 27) helped the hosts to a score of 147 in 19.3 overs, as UAE were bowled out.
Ehsan Khan picked up a four-wicket haul to restrict Rizwan’s side to a decent total, however, Hong Kong had too much in the tank as they chased down the required target with six balls to spare.
Openers Nizakat (39 off 39) and Yasim Murtaza (58 off 43) set the stage early on with Babar Hayat’s unbeaten 38-run effort capping off a brilliant performance from Hong Kong.