Nepal have made something of a habit at snatching victory from the jaws of defeat in recent years, and it happened again today in Zimbabwe as a 79 run eighth wicket partnership helped them win their Men's World Cup Qualifier seventh place play-off semi-final against the UAE in Harare.
The UAE were put into bat and quickly found themselves on the backfoot when they lost opener Asif Khan to a second ball duck. Innings of 44 by captain Vriitya Aravind and 35 from Rohan Mustafa were their top scores as they were bowled out for 181, Karan KC and Sandeep Lamichhane both taking three wickets.
Kushal Bhurtel scored 35 in the opening stages of Nepal's reply, but they were firmly on the backfoot when he got out in the 21st over with the score on 63-6. Dipendra Singh Airee and Gulsan Jha were able to add 43 but on 106-7, it was looking unlikely for Nepal.
Kushal Bhurtel plays a shot for Nepal (ICC)
But the realm of the unlikely can often be where Nepal play their best cricket, and so it was today. Across 15 overs, Airee and Sandeep Lamichhane put on a partnership of 79 to secure an unlikely three wicket win with 6.4 overs to spare. Airee was unbeaten on 79 with Lamichhane contributing 23.
Nepal will now play the seventh place play-off against Ireland on Tuesday, whilst UAE play USA in the battle to avoid the wooden spoon on Thursday.