Even on a tour where almost every aspect of planning and preparation has been squarely focused on getting Team USA into the best possible shape for ICC World Cricket League Division 2 next month in Namibia, the players and management will surely allow themselves some celebrations after the most complete USA performance of recent times.
After some further out of character weather in Dubai saw a delayed start and the match reduced to 42 Overs per side, Saraubh Netravalkar won the and chose to bowl first. A fully fit again Ali Khan again showed what an asset he is to Team USA as his fiery spell up top claimed two big scalps in his first spell before coming back with one more to finish with 3 for 29 from 7 overs.
The reason he only bowled 7 overs was due to USA’s bowlers, particularly Steven Taylor, all combining so well to bowl the hosts out inside their 42 Over allocation. Karima Gore and Jessy Singh picked up a wicket each but then not for the first time on this tour, it was time for Taylor to shine. His off-spin ran through the lower-middle order of UAE and he finished with 5 for 26 from his full allocation of 9 overs.
UAE had only managed to post 143 All Out and with the series on the line, nothing was being taken for granted by the American batsmen. Any thoughts of a wobble in the chase with the loss of Xavier Marshall for 9 were put to bed quickly, and in the most emphatic fashion.
Over the course of the next 24 overs, Steven Taylor rounded out an outstanding day for himself with 68 not out and Monank Patel proved the perfect partner with 62 not out. Their partnership was worth 113 and USA romped home to victory by 9 wickets with more than a dozen overs to spare.
An emphatic and well deserved victory for a side that has worked so hard in recent months, and no mean feat over a UAE side that less than 12 months ago were beating a Test Nation in the shape of Zimbabwe at the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier.
So now it’s a well earned break for Team USA building and the flight back home to America. It’s just a little over three weeks to ICC World Cricket League Division 2 in Namibia though and USA will go in to that tournament knowing that every possible piece of preparation has been completed.
Team USA schedule in UAE:
March 15 – USA v UAE (2pm) – T20I – ICC Academy Oval 1, Dubai – NO RESULT
March 16 – USA v UAE (2pm) – T20I – ICC Academy Oval 1, Dubai – LOST BY 24 RUNS
March 18 – USA v UAE (10am) – 50 Overs – ICC Academy Oval 1, Dubai – WON BY 5 WICKETS
March 19 – USA v Lancashire (10am) – 50 Overs – ICC Academy Oval 1, Dubai – WON BY 6 WICKETS
March 21 – USA v UAE XI (10am) – 50 Overs – Sevens Cricket Ground, Dubai – WON BY 24 RUNS
March 22 – USA v UAE XI (10am) – 50 Overs – Sevens Cricket Ground, Dubai – WON BY 32 RUNS
March 24 – USA v UAE XI (10am) – 50 Overs – Sevens Cricket Ground, Dubai – WON BY 61 RUNS
March 25 – USA v UAE (10am) – 50 Overs – Sevens Cricket Ground, Dubai – LOST BY 24 RUNS
March 28 – USA v UAE (10am) – 50 Overs – Sevens Cricket Ground, Dubai – WON BY 9 WICKETS