UAE give Afghanistan and Ireland WC hopes

Dubai: The United Arab Emirates (UAE) eliminated Zimbabwe to give Afghanistan and Ireland a lifeline by turning their last Super Six match as a shootout to qualify for the 2019 World Cup race.

The UAE, who were out of the World Cup contention last week after losing to Scotland, defeated Zimbabwe by three runs in the penultimate match of the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018 Super Six at the Harare Sports Stadium.

Put in to bat, the UAE were 235 for seven in 47.5 overs when heavy downpour ended their innings. When play resumed, Zimbabwe’s target was revised to 230 in 40 overs.

The UAE then reduced Zimbabwe to 45 for three that included the prized scalp of the tournament’s leading run-getter Brendan Taylor.

Sean Williams and Peter Moor, playing his first match of the tournament, lifted them to 124 before.

When the last eight-over Power Play started, Zimbabwe needed 70 to win, but despite Sikandar Raza (34, 26b, 2×4, 1×6) and Williams’ (80, 80b, 5×4, 1×6) best efforts, finished at 226 for seven.

The match’s result means the winner of Friday’s match will become the second qualifiers after the West Indies and will also feature in the event’s final.

The only way Zimbabwe can qualify for the World Cup is in the scenario of a tie but (in which each side bats for, at least, 25 overs). In this situation, Ireland’s net run-rate will drop behind Zimbabwe. (ANI)