GEELONG: Netherlands’ batters held their nerves calm in a tense run chase to claim their first victory in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 as they downed United Arab Emirates (UAE) by three wickets with only three balls to spare.
Set to chase a paltry target of 113, the Netherlands jittered in the middle as they lost three quick wickets between the 12th and 15th over, plunging to 76/6 after sailing comfortably to 71/3.
UAE bowler Junaid Siddique stormed through the middle order as he picked back-to-back wickets in the 14th over to set the alarm bells off for the Netherlands.
Skipper Scot Edwards then remained firm on the crease along with Tim Pringle to raise a match-saving partnership of 27 runs for the seventh wicket to ensure that they took their side home.
Edwards played an unbeaten knock of 16 off 19 while Pringle scored 15 off 16 before was castled by Zahoor Khan in the penultimate over.
Max O’Dowd top-scored for the Dutch side with 18-ball 23 while Collin Ackerman contributed with 17 off 19.
For UAE, Junaid returned the sensational bowling figures of 3/24 while Basil Hameed, Aayan Afzal Khan, Karthik Meiyappan and Zahoor took a scalp each.
Earlier, batting first after winning the toss, the UAE batting lineup failed and could only accumulate 111/8 despite Muhammad Waseem’s 41.
The opening batter carried his bat till the 16th over but could not bolster his side to a massive total as he remained touch too slow in his anchoring knock.
The right-handed batter scored 41 off 47 deliveries and hit one boundary and two sixes.
The rest of the UAE failed to contribute significantly with Vriitya Aravind (18) being the second top scorer.
Right-arm pacer de Leede led the bowling attack for the Netherlands as he returned with 3/19, while Fred Klaassen bagged two. Tim Pringle and Roelof van der Merwe struck out a batter apiece.