Saqlain Haider scored a brilliant 103 against PNG    AFP
Saqlain Haider scored an unbeaten 102 against PNG AFP

United Arab Emirates (UAE) defeated Papua New Guinea (PNG) by 9 wickets in the ICC Intercontinental Cup 2015-16-17 match, at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, on Monday. Chasing target of 40 to win in the final innings, UAE scored 42 for 1 with Shaiman Anwar cracking 7 fours to score unbeaten 32. UAE produced a clinical performance in their backyard of Abu Dhabi as they dominated PNG in all departments in the four-day match. After taking a huge lead of 247 runs in the first innings, UAE had bowled out PNG for 286, which ensured the hosts had to chase a double-digit target to win the clash.

On the first day of the match which began on April 7, PNG won the toss and decided to bat. PNG would have liked to put up a big total on the board, but UAE bowlers had other plans. Qadeer Ahmed and Ahmed Raza claimed 3 for 43 and 3 for 38 respectively, whereas Mohammad Naveed registered 2 for 43 and Imran Haider snaffled 2 for 50, to help UAE bowl PNG out for a mere total of 194. In their reply, UAE batsmen made merry, declaring at 441 for 8.

While Anwar missed out on getting runs in the first innings, Rohan Mustafa and Laxman Sreekumar provided a 68-run opening stand, which had set the tone for a big UAE total in the first innings. Rameez Shahzad scored a 147-ball 63.

Mohammad Usman and Saqlain Haider slammed centuries to bolster UAE s reply in the first innings. Usman faced 183 balls and struck 11 fours to score 103, whereas Haider remained unbeaten on 102, having face 213 balls, including 10 fours in the process. Mahuru Dai, the most successful bowler for PNG scalped 4 for 126, had to send down as many as 52.3 overs.

PNG needed a better effort in their second innings and the top order did its best. Tony Ura scored 35, and Lega Saika played a special innings of 142 not out, which came off 232 balls with the help of 23 fours. However, a poor middle-order show and no resistance from the tail meant PNG were pushed on the backfoot completely. PNG were dismissed for 286, which set a 40-run target for the UAE. Naveed and Imran Haider grabbed 4 wickets each to put the game in UAE s firm control.

Brief scores:

Papua New Guinea 194 (Jack Vare 38, Chad Soper 38; Qadeer Ahmed 3 for 43, Ahmed Raza 3 for 48) and 286 (Lega Saika 142*; Mohammad Naveed 4 for 78, Imran Haider 4 for 93) lost to United Arab Emirates 441 (Rameez Shahzad 63, Mohammad Usman 103, Saqlain Haider 102*; Mahuru Dai 4 for 126) and 42 for 1 (Shaiman Anwar 32*; Norman Vanua 1 for 10) by 9 wickets.