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Asia Cup Qualifiers 2022: Babar Hayat’s late fireworks helps Hong Kong qualify for the Asia Cup 2022

image-l7840oruHong Kong qualified for Asia Cup 2022. PC: Twitter

Babar Hayat’s late heroics with the bat helped Hong Kong knock over the United Arab Emirates by eight wickets (with an over to spare) in a must-win game at the Asia Cup Qualifiers, 2022.

With Kuwait winning against Singapore with a huge margin earlier in the day, it was a must win game for Hong Kong against the UAE to finish at the top of the table and qualify for the Asia Cup 2022.

Murtaza, Hayat stars with the bat for Hong Kong

Chasing the target of 148Hong Kong got off to a flying start. Both the openers, skipper Nizakat Khan and Yasim Murtaza tackled the new ball and finished the powerplay with 51 for no loss.

Hong Kong seemed to be on their way to an easy win as the opening stand lasted more than ten overs, with 85 runs on the board. Nizakat Khan departed after scoring a run a ball 39.

Following the wicket of Khan, Murtaza completed his half century in 35 balls and got out at 58 off 43 balls, after a 31 run stand for the second wicket.

Thereafter, just when UAE was looking to bounce back, Babar Hayat started to get things under control with a couple of big overs. Hayat remained unbeaten with 38 runs off 26 balls with three sixes, including the winning shot to finish things off in style.

Hong Kong finished the Qualifiers stage with three wins and made it through to the Asia Cup 2022. They will be playing alongside the two heavyweights, India and Pakistan in Group A of the Asia Cup.

Zawar Farid’s quickfire cameo took UAE to a respectable total

Earlier, Hong Kong won the toss and elected to bowl first. The UAE lost their openers early and were 45 for three after six overs.

Captain Rizwan tried to steady the ship but kept losing partners at the other end. Finally, he was joined by Zawar Farid and the pair managed to add 60 runs for the sixth wicket. Zawar played a brilliant innings, scoring 41 off 27 balls which brought UAE back in the game. Rizwan departed after scoring a decent 49 and UAE was bowled out for 147.

Ehsan Khan continued to shine for Hong Kong as he registered his career best figures of 4 for 24. Ayush Shukla also contributed with 3 for 30 in his four overs.

Brief Scores:

UAE 147 all-out (19.3)

Chundangapoyil Rizwan 49 (44) , Zawar Farid 41 (27);
Ehsan Khan 4-24 (4), Ayush Shukla 3-30 (4)

Hong Kong 149-2 (19)

Yasim Murtaza 58 (43), Babar Hayat 38*(26);
Basil Hameed 1-31 (4), Junaid Siddique 1-35 (3)

Result: Hong Kong won by 8 wickets.

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