Amjad Ali fell two runs short of his century as the UAE suffered their second straight defeat in the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) Premier League with a 70-run defeat to Afghanistan in Kuala Lumpur.
Chasing Afghanistan’s impressive 302, the UAE were all out for 232 inside 45 overs, leaving the Gulf nation still winless in the six-team competition after losing to Nepal by four wickets in their opener on Thursday.
Saimullah Shenwari (82) top scored for Afghanistan, while Ali (98) was the only batsman to cross 50 in an innings that saw five UAE players reaching double figures.
UAE, coached by Aaqib Javed, will now take on Hong Kong on Sunday aiming to pick up their first points of the competition.
“It was a poor game from us,” Javed told Sport360. “Our fielding was disappointing. We dropped four catches and six yesterday, and if you drop 10 catches in two matches then there’s no chance you can win the game.”
After being put to bat, Afghanistan got off to a good start with Noor Ali Zadran (53) and Usman Ghani (55) providing a 99-run opening stand by the 23rd over.
However, UAE captain Khurram Khan grabbed two wickets as Afghanistan found themselves 124-4.
But the Afghans maintained the runs with Shenwari and Nabi putting on a 125-run partnership off just 99 balls.
Nabi fell in the 47th over when he was caught off Mohammad Naveed. Shenwari carried on, and aided by Shafiqullah (14 not out), the wicketkeeper-batsman helped Afghanistan amass 53 runs in the last 3.5 overs, with Ahmed Raza ending with 2-50.
In reply, Ali put on a 70-run opening stand with Salman Faris (27). When Khurram (28) joined Ali, the opener again dominated in an 86-run fourth wicket stand off 83 balls.
He eventually departed in the 32nd over, falling two short of a century, trapped in front by Rahmat Shah, who eventually finished 5-32.
Krishnachandran Karate, one of five new additions in the team, was left unbeaten on 22, as wickets regularly fell before UAE being eventually bowled out with 33 balls left.
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