World Cup Qualifiers Zimbabwe have almost thrown themselves out of the 2019 world cup qualifiers as they lost to UAE by three runs in a thrilling encounter. Chasing a revised target of 230 runs in 40 overs, the hosts managed only 226 runs. Mohammad Naveed was the star for UAE as he grabbed three wickets and also played a cameo of 22 runs off 10 balls.
Batting first, Zimbabwe got off to a solid platform courtesy of Rohan Mustafa ( 31 runs off 58 balls) and Ghulam Shabber’s ( 40 runs off 62 balls) 74 run partnership for the second wicket and Rameez Shahzad’s knock of 59 runs off 61 balls.
At one stage UAE were three wickets down for 180 runs but Shahzad fell in the 39th over and Zimbabwe ran through UAE’s lower middle order and tailenders. Shaiman Anwar tried to arrest the damage with a valiant effort of 33 runs of 51 balls while Mohammad Naveed hammered three fours and a six in his 10 balls cameo that produced 22 vital runs.
Sikandar Raza was the pick of the bowlers as he grabbed three wickets in his ten overs and also conceded only 41 runs.
As rain interrupted the game, Zimbabwe was given a revised target of 230 runs in 40 overs. But Mohammad Naveed sent back both openers early and pushed the hosts on the backfoot.
Sean Williams constructed a tough knock of 80 runs off 80 balls but he didn’t receive any support from the other end. Peter Moor scored 39 runs and Sikandar Raza managed to get 34 runs but these efforts weren’t enough for Zimbabwe to ace the chase.
With this defeat, Zimbabwe have made it difficult for themselves to qualify for the 2019 world cup. The hosts can still qualify for the world cup but for that, they need the match between Ireland and Afghanistan to end in a tie.