Three closely fought-matches between the Asian Cricket Council's highest ranked men's teams saw some stunning upset victories for Malaysia over Afghanistan and Oman over Nepal in the latest matches of the ACC Premier League. In the One Day International at Kinrara UAE squeezed past Hong Kong by two wickets. Of all the results however it was Malaysia's that was most noteworthy - their first victory over Afghanistan since they first started playing against each other in 2004.
Afghanistan's stellar progress in recent years - they have qualified for four World Cups and are a full One Day International nation - has been remarkable yet Malaysia's three-wicket win today at the Bayuemas Oval will go down in the annals of Malaysian cricket. Having bowled out Afghanistan for 175 in 46 overs thanks to 18 overs of spin from Khizar Hayat and Shahrulnizam Yusof which garnered 6 wickets for just 48 runs. Going into bat Malaysia's top order set a solid platform with 40s from captain Ahmed Faiz and Shafiq Sharif before a late flurry of wickets had the home side in trouble until the winning run came after 37 overs.
|Oman's captain Sultan Ahmed|
At the Selangor Turf Club the match between World Twenty20 contestants Nepal and ICC Affiliate Oman was another exciting game. Oman's spinners were incisive in bowling out Nepal for 157 in 45 overs, Man of the Match Amir Kaleem taking 4-36. Nepal fought hard with the ball themselves and after opener Zeeshan Maqsood was dismissed for 44, just 20 runs came off 15 overs for the loss of five Oman wickets. Nepal's captain Paras Khadka marshalled his bowlers well but a partnership of 35 for the ninth wicket between Oman's captain Sultan Ahmed and Amir Ali got Oman home with 13 balls to spare.
|UAE's Amjad Ali|
The One Day International between Hong Kong and UAE was also close. UAE's pace bowlers Kamran Shazad and Mohammad Shahzad took 7-67 between them in 19 overs in bowling out Hong Kong 157. Opener Amjad Ali set UAE going with a steady 39 but it took a 36-run partnership between Fayyaz Ahmed (37*) and Mohammad Naveed to get the Gulf nation home with nine balls remaining.
With three wins out of three, Oman are now at the top of the table with two games to play. They next take on Afghanistan on Monday.
ACC Premier League 2014: Day 3
Malaysia v Afghanistan at Bayuemas
MALAYSIA WON BY THREE WICKETS
Malaysia won the toss and elected to field
Afghanistan: 175 all out off 46 overs (U.Ghani 36, N.Ahmadzai 36; K.Hayat 4-28)
Malaysia: 176 for 7 off 37 overs (A.Arudin 34, A.Faiz 44, S.Sharif 44)
Man of the Match: Khizar Hayat (Malaysia)
Hong Kong v UAE at Kinrara
UAE WON BY TWO WICKETS
UAE won the toss and elected to field
Hong Kong: 157 all out off 45.2 overs (I.Ahmed 30; M.Shahzad 4-26, K.Shazad 3-41)
UAE: 158 for 8 off 48.3 overs (A.Ali 39, F.Ahmed 37*)
Man of the Match: Mohammad Shahzad (UAE)
Nepal v Oman at STC
OMAN WON BY TWO WICKETS
Oman won the toss and elected to field
Nepal: 156 all out off 45 overs (A.Kaleem 4-35)
Oman: 161 for 8 off 47.5 overs (Z.Maqsood 44, S.Ahmed 32*)
Man of the Match: Aamir Kaleem (Oman)
Filed May 4th, 2014