Monday 22 July, 2019

Nikita Miller helps West Indies defend 115 against UAE

A five-wicket haul from Jamaican veteran spinner Nikita Miller helped spare the blushes of a struggling West Indies batting line-up in a 32-run victory over the United Arab Emirates (UAE), in a rain-hit ICC 2018 World Cup Qualifiers warm-up match, at the Harare Sports Club in Zimbabwe.

Batting first the regional team was bundled out for just 115 in 33 overs after being badly shaken by UAE spinner Imran Haider,  who claimed figures of four for 16. 

At the top of the order Chris Gayle was prised out for 16 and his opening partner Evin Lewis for 10.  Both succumbed to the bowling of pacer Mohammed Naveed. 

Shimron Hetmyer made 20 before being bowled by Rohan Mustafa and Marlon Samuels hit 15, but they were the last batsmen to reach double figures.

In reply, however, the UAE fared even worse off as the team was dismissed for 83.  Only four batsmen reached double figures with No.7 batsman Adnan Mufti top-scoring with 14 runs. 

Miller did most of the damage with the ball by taking five for 20 but pace bowler Kemar Roach also played his part with three for 15.

For the West Indies, the victory must have lifted their spirits, morale and confidence as they bid to qualify for next year's World Cup, but a few questions remain unanswered from the batting perspective.

On Tuesday, the West Indies were bowled out by Afghanistan for 110 while chasing 140, and on Thursday they managed only 115.

The West Indies will now open their ICC World Cup qualifying schedule against the UAE on Tuesday.  The UAE will in the meantime get things under way against Papua New Guinea on Sunday.  The Netherlands and Ireland are also in Group A.

WEST INDIES WORLD CUP QUALIFIERS SCHEDULE

Tuesday March 6 (3:30 ECT)
Windies v UAE ~ Harare

Thursday March 8 (3:30 ECT)
Windies v Papua New Guinea ~ Old Hararians, Harare

Saturday March 10 (3:30 ECT)
Windies v Ireland ~ Harare Sports Club

Monday March 12 (3:30 ECT)
Windies v Netherlands ~ Harare Sports Club

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