UAE retain Gulf Cup for second consecutive year

Saudi Arabia beat Kuwait to finish third

UAE made it two in a row when the hosts defeated Oman by four wickets to win the third Gulf Cup cricket tournament for Arab nationals with an unbeaten record at the Sharjah stadium on Saturday night.

Opener Qais Farooq struck a crucial 45 as UAE overhauled Oman’s competitive score of 137 for seven with three balls to spare in a tense finish.

Oman, who won the inaugural edition of the event in 2010, were off to a solid start after winning the toss with their openers, Khalid Moosa and Mohsin Gul Baig featuring in a 51-run stand.

Moosa made 31 off 22 balls with three fours and two sixes while Mohsin chipped in 14 off 15 balls with three fours. Their departure changed the complexion of the match as Oman lost five wickets with the addition of just eight runs, crashing to 59 for five from a healthy 51 for no loss.

Qais bin Khalid (37 not out off 31 balls with one four and two sixes) and Yousuf Rahim (29 off 31 balls with two fours and one six) steadied the stuttering innings with a 73-run stand for the sixth wicket.

Their solid efforts meant Oman finished on a decent 137 for seven in their allotted overs. Salman Farooq and Saeed Al Saffar were the most successful UAE bowlers taking two wickets each.

UAE, sensing a possible win, kept momentum going right through with Qais Farooq producing a stand out performance when it mattered most. His innings of 45 off 40 balls contained seven fours and one six.

With captain Mohammed Tauqir (21 off 21), Marwan Khamis (20 off 24) and Fahad Al Hashmi (17 not out off 12 balls) playing sensibly in the middle of their innings UAE provided the finishing touch to a well-deserved win in 19.3 overs.

Saudi Arabia finished third in this four-team competition when they defeated Kuwait by 44 runs, thanks to a stunning spell by Waleed Shaikh, who grabbed five wickets for just just 13 runs.

Saudi Arabia, batting first, scored 136 for eight with Abbas Saad and Mohsin Shaikh making 27 each. Kuwait, in reply, were bowled out for 92.

Brief scores:

UAE beat Oman by 4 wickets: Oman 137 for 7 (Khalid Moosa 31, Mohsin Gul Baig 14, Qais bin Khalid 37no, Yousuf Rahim 29; Saeed Al Saffar 2-37, Salman Farooq 2-22) UAE 138 for 6 in 19.3 overs (Qais Farooq 45, Marwan Khamis 20, Mohammed Tauqir 21, Fahad Al Hashmi 17; Mohammed Ishaq 1-19, Yousuf Rahim 1-34, Qais bin Khalid 1-32, Sufyan Mahmood 1-20). Man of the match Qais Farooq of UAE. Umpires: Iftikhar Ali and Mohsin Butt.

Saudi Arabia beat Kuwait by 44 runs: Saudi Arabia 136 for 8 (Abbas Saad 27, Mohsin Shaikh 27, Waleed Shaikh 22, Rayyan Hashmi 14; Mahmood 3-19) Kuwait 92 all out (A.R. Kandari 24, Mahmood 16, A.R. Dashit 10; Waleed Shaikh 5-13, Assad Abdullah 2-5). Man of the match: Waleed Shaikh of Saudi Arabia. Umpires: Mohsin Butt and Syed Shabbir Ali.

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