ABU DHABI // The United Arab Emirates bounced back in style in the ACC Trophy in Kuala Lumpur with a three wicket win over Afghanistan yesterday. The UAE had a disappointing start to their ctitle defence when they lost to Saudi Arabia by 29 runs on Friday, but they were too strong for an inconsistent Afghanistan side. The Afghans openers, Karim Sadiq and the captain Nowroz Mangal, scored 74 runs for the first wicket.
Riaz Khaliq, one of the two changes to the UAE side, justified his inclusion when the ball was tossed to him as a fourth-change bowler. He had Sadiq caught behind and his dismissal was followed by a timely run-out of Mangal. Afghanistan still looked set for a big target, but collapsed from 173-3 to 214 all out. Though the UAE achieved the target with 17 balls to spare, the victory was not convincing. They needed Arshad Ali (68) and Khurram Khan (42) to bind the innings together. Plus they suffered another mini-collapse towards the end losing four wickets in the span of five overs.