Ace India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin hailed United Arab Emirates (UAE)’s stunning seven-wicket win over New Zealand in the second match of their three-game T20I series, saying that it is a big achievement and shows the impact of franchise cricket in the gulf side’s victory over the mighty Blackcaps.
In the match, Aayan Afzal Khan claimed 3-20 while Muhammad Jawadullah took 2-16 as UAE restricted New Zealand to 142/8. In reply, skipper Muhammad Waseem led from the front with a 29-ball 55 while Asif Khan made 48 as UAE chased down the total in 15.4 overs to level the series 1-1 and get their first win over the tourists across all international formats.
“UAE beating New Zealand is a big achievement and it’s also showing us what franchisee cricket has succeeded in doing. There is hope for the next generation cricketer coming from countries that aren’t mainstream test nations and that’s good news for the game,” wrote Ashwin on social media platform ‘X’.
Citing premier Afghanistan leg-spinner Rashid Khan’s example of emerging as one of the most dependable players in the cricketing circuit in the last decade, Ashwin further wrote, “When @rashidkhan_19 broke into the IPL, Afghans weren’t a feared cricketing nation at world cups but now no one can refuse that fact.”
“The future may well see other nations having representations at the IPL and turning the fortunes of the game in their respective countries. Well done UAE #UAEvsNZ.”