The United Arab Emirates and Ireland both qualified for the men’s Twenty20 World Cup after winning their semi-finals in Oman on Tuesday.
UAE broke Nepal’s three-match winning streak with a 68-run victory to qualify for the T20 World Cup for the second time, while Ireland overcame Oman by 56 runs to qualify for the global showcase event for the seventh time.
The T20 World Cup will be placed in seven cities across Australia from October 16 to November 13. The tournament was supposed to take place in late 2020 in Australia, however, it was postponed two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
After winning the 2021 edition by defeating New Zealand in the final, Australia is ready to defend their championship on home turf.
The 13th and 14th slots for the T20 World Cup were awarded to the UAE and Ireland, respectively, with the final two spaces to be determined at the second qualifying tournament in Zimbabwe in July.
The victor of Thursday’s qualification match between UAE and Ireland will be seeded in Group 1 of the first round of the World Cup. They will compete against Sri Lanka and Namibia, with the fourth team to be determined during the second qualifiers.
With a 68-run victory, UAE ended Nepal’s three-match winning streak, while Ireland defeated Oman by 56 runs. UAE produced a clinical performance at the Oman Academy Ground 1 to qualify for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup for the second time.
It will be Ireland’s seventh appearance at the global showcase event, being the lone Full Member nation in Qualifier A.
The two winning teams earned the 13th and 14th berths in the competition, which will be held in Australia later this year, with the final two spots determined at the Qualifier B in July. Nepal was shocked by UAE pacer Junaid Siddique’s early strikes as they chased an intimidating victory mark of 176 to win.
Ireland scored 165/7 in their first innings after losing the toss. With a wonderfully crafted 32-ball 47, Gareth Delany took the lead. Oman got off to a good start in the Powerplay, but Ireland’s typical opening pair of Paul Stirling and Andrew Balbirnie failed them this time.
Delany and Harry Tector, on the other hand, put the hosts under pressure with an 82-run fourth-wicket stand. Early on, Tector was the aggressor, but after Delany settled in, there were fireworks on both ends of the wicket. Delany gobbled his lone over, blasting three consecutive sixes, and skipper Zeeshan Maqsood had a rough time with the ball.
Both openers had been bowled earlier by Bilal Khan, and Kaleemullah matched his strike partner’s efforts by dismissing Tector for a well-made 35.
Lorcan Tucker followed suit in the next ball, and Oman had their tails up for the last stretch of the innings after Khawar Ali sent Delany back in the next over. With good reason, too, given Ireland’s fragile position at 106/5 after 14 overs. George Dockrell contributed a good 16-ball 18, but it was Andy Mcbrine who gave the impetus for Ireland to reach 150. Three fours and two sixes were among his quick-fire 36.