Dubai [UAE], August 20 (ANI): After defeating New Zealand in the second T20I, UAE captain Muhammad Waseem lauded his team’s spinner Aayan Afzal Khan for a match-winning spell that reduced the Kiwis to a modest score, saying that he sees a big star in him.
Skipper Muhammad Waseem led from the front as UAE scripted a stunning win over New Zealand in the second T20I in Dubai on Saturday to level the three-match series.
“I am very happy with the performance of my team and myself. We are always trying to win well when we win. (On Asif Khan) He is a quality player. Unlucky that he made his debut late. He has the experience and he promised me that he will finish the game, and he did it. (On Aayan Afzal Khan) I see a big star in him. Hopefully, he can be a future star for the UAE. He does not feel pressure, irrespective of who he is facing,” said the skipper in a post-match presentation.
Coming to the match, UAE put NZ to bat first. Kiwis lost early wickets and sunk to 65/5 in 11.3 overs. Opener Chad Bowes (21), the hero of the previous match Tim Seifert (7), and Mitchell Santner (1) failed to score big. Aayan caused a lot of damage to NZ’s top order, taking three of these five wickets.
Then came a 53-run stand between Mark Chapman and James Neesham. The duo helped NZ cross the 100-run mark. Chapman smashed 63 in 46 balls consisting of three fours and three sixes while Neesham scored a supportive 21 in 17 balls, with two fours.
Kiwis ended the innings at 142/8 in 20 overs.
Aayan (3/20) and Muhammad Jawadullah (2/16) were among the pick of the bowlers for UAE.
Chasing 153, UAE lost Aryansh Sharma for a duck in the first over itself. But that did not affect the intent of skipper Waseem at all, who stitched a 40-run stand with Vriitya Aravind (25 in 21 balls, with three fours and two sixes) to help UAE make a comeback in the match.
Waseem played with caution initially but let his arms loose to reach his fifty in 27 balls.
He formed a 56-run stand with Asif and had scored 55 in 29 balls with four boundaries and three sixes when he was dismissed. UAE was 96/3 in 11 overs.
From then on, Asif built a match-winning stand with Basil Hameed (12*), smashing 48* in 29 balls with five fours and a six to get UAE a historic seven-wicket win with 26 balls to go.
Santner, skipper Tim Southee and Kyle Jamieson got a wicket each. (ANI)
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