ABOUT THE MATCH
In-form Oman will look to continue their winning streak from their recent pentangular series when they face the UAE in their first match of the ICC T20 World Cup qualifier. This Group B fixture takes place at the Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium on October 18.
Oman won all four matches of their warm-up tournament, the pentangular series they hosted, and will be keen to continue that form as they bid to reach the final tournament for the second consecutive time.
The UAE, meanwhile, whitewashed the Netherlands in August in their most recent T20i series and, like Oman, won both of their warm-up matches for this tournament beating Scotland and Papua New Guinea. Their preparations have been hit by players, including former captain Mohammad Naveed, being hit my corruption charges on the eve of the tournament.
The Abu Dhabi wicket is generally best to bat first on, and after they lost the toss in both of their warm-up games, Oman could win this one and elect to set a target.
PITCH AND CONDITIONS
While there will be a little cloud about, the chance of rain is forecast as minimal with temperatures in the 30s, there is likely to be little to worry about weather-wise.
The high scores in the warm-up matches at the Sheikh Zayed stadium were a reminder of how good it can be for batting on particularly batting first.
PROBABLE PLAYING XI OF United Arab Emirates
Chirag Suri, Darius D’Silva, Muhammad Usman, Mohammad Boota, Waheed Ahmed, Rohan Mustafa, Ghulam Shabber (wk), Ahmed Raza (c), Zahoor Khan, Junaid Siddique, Imran Haider
PROBABLE PLAYING XI OF Oman
Khawar Ali, Jatinder Singh, Aqib Ilyas, Zeeshan Maqsood (c), Aamir Kaleem, Khurram Nawaz, Sandeep Goud, Suraj Kumar (wk), Mohammad Nadeem, Fayyaz Butt, Bilal Khan
United Arab Emirates
- Mohammad Naveed, Qadeer Ahmed and Shaiman Anwar were all dropped on the eve of the tournament and it has now emerged the three of them have been suspended by the ICC on anti-corruption charges – concerningly related to this qualifier.
- Naveed has been replaced as captain by Ahmed Raza, while Waheed Ahmed, Darius D’Silva and Junaid Siddique have all been called up.
- To their credit, the UAE have reacted well to their off-field chaos.
- They won both official warm-up matches, beating Scotland and Papua New Guinea after some good batting performances to prove they can cope without their suspended trio.
- They previously won all four matches of their tour of the Netherlands, against an inexperienced home line-up.
- Oman’s bowling line-up was settled throughout the pentangular series, so their selection questions revolve around the batting order.
- Jatinder Singh’s half-century in the last warm-up match re-confirms his place, leaving two spaces for Mehran Khan, Khurran Nawaz and Sandeep Goud to fight over.
- Oman won all four matches in the pentangular series they hosted ahead of this tournament and also won both of their official warm-up matches too.
- In Muscat, their bowlers were particularly impressive as they ended the series by bowling the Netherlands out for 94 and Nepal for 64 on their way to dominant wins.
PROBABLE WINNING TEAM:
Oman comes into this qualifier in excellent form and they are favourites to beat the UAE as a result.
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