T20 World Cup Qualifier: Ireland lose by five wickets to hosts UAE

Paul Stirling hit nine fours in his innings of 72
Paul Stirling hit nine fours in his innings of 72
ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier, Abu Dhabi:
Ireland 125 all out (20 overs): Stirling 72; Mustafa 4-18
UAE 129-5 (17 overs): Mustafa 39
UAE won by five wickets

Ireland lost by five wickets to hosts United Arab Emirates in their second Group B match at the T20 World Cup Qualifier in Abu Dhabi.

An under-par batting performance from Ireland saw them all out for 125 off 20 overs despite Paul Stirling's 72.

Rohan Mustafa took 4-18 and followed that up by top-scoring with 39 as his side reached 129-5 in reply with three overs to spare.

Ireland beat Hong Kong by eight wickets in their opening match on Friday.

The Ireland team will be in action again on Monday when they face Oman, then play Canada on Wednesday, Jersey on Friday and Nigeria on Saturday to complete their group stage programme.

They need to finish in the top four places in their group of seven to stay in contention for qualification.

Top spot will secure automatic qualification at next year's T20 World Cup finals in Australia.

Opening batsman Stirling took 58 balls to compile his innings, hitting nine fours in the process.

Darius D'Silva and Mohammad Usman both scored 29 to back up Mustafa's effort, while Mark Adair, Boyd Rankin and David Delany took one wicket apiece.

On Wednesday, three UAE players including captain Mohammad Naveed were provisionally suspended after being charged under the International Cricket Council's anti-corruption code.