(MENAFN- Khaleej Times)
Published: Sun 25 Sep 2022, 11:30 PM
The UAE fought valiantly before going down to Bangladesh in the first match of the two-game T20 series at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium on Sunday.
Less than month before the start of their T20 World Cup campaign in Australia, the UAE put up a big fight against their Test-playing rivals, but in the end their brave efforts were not enough as Bangladesh won the clash by seven runs.
Chasing 159 in 20 overs, the home team were all out for 151 in 19.4 overs.
Making his T20 international debut, Aayan Afzal Khan, the 16-year-old all-rounder, came up with a brilliant cameo (25 off 17 balls, 3 fours) after the fall of the fourth wicket at the team score of 83 in the 11th over.
Aayan kept the team in the hunt for a memorable win, but his dismissal in the final over ended the hopes as the Tigers held their nerve to register a thrilling victory.
Earlier, experienced opening batsman Chirag Suri (39 off 24 balls) played a fine innings at the top order, but the other UAE batsmen failed to convert their starts.
With a bit of support, Aayan would have become a hero on his debut match as he took the game deep into the final over with support from tailenders Karthik Meiyappan (12) and Junaid Siddique (11) with the UAE needing 11 runs in the final over with two wickets in hand.
But Bangladesh medium pacer Shoriful Islam (3/21) bowled a brilliant last over, taking two wickets in two balls to finish the contest.
Meanwhile, Afif Hossain (77 not out, 55 balls, 7 fours, three sixes) was named man-of-the-match for his brilliant half-century for Bangladesh as the Tigers made 158 for five in 20 overs after UAE captain CP Rizwan had won the toss and elected to field.
Spinner Karthik Meiyappan (4-0-33-2) was the pick of the UAE bowlers, while Sabir Ali (3-0-16-1) and debutant Aayan Afzal Khan (3-0-16-1) also impressed with the ball.
The two teams will now clash in the second and final match of the T20 series on Tuesday at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
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