The Zayed Cricket Academy held their nerves to clinch a seven-run thriller over Eastbourne College of England to win the ARCH Trophy U19 title.

Both Eastbourne and ZCA has won all three of their group games ahead of the Trophy Final, in a tournament that also featured the Cheltenham College, Dubai College, Dubai International Academy, ICC Academy, Radley College and Royal Belfast Academy Institute. The full scorecards for the tournament, as well as all the individual player stats and  the Dream Team can be found here: link.  To register interest for the 2017 and 2018 ARCH Tournaments, visit our dedicated webpage here

Eastbourne, who had won the trophy in 2008, looked set to be the first team to bring the trophy home twice after winning the toss and then bowling their opponents out for 122 in 31.0. ZCA battled back though with a fine all-round team effort to bowl out Eastbourne for 115in 38.4  at The Sevens Stadium last Friday.

Abdullah Asif played the stand-out role. He smashed a 15-ball 27 highlighted by three sixes and a four during ZCA’s innings and provided the early breakthrough in the bowling by taking the first two wickets.

Eastbourne were in the driving seat at 68 for two when Umar Zia turned it around for ZCA. He took two wickets in two balls and then bagged a third two overs later. Moiz Qazi then caught the next man followed by a run-out resulting from a direct hit on the stumps from Mohammed Riyan. Eastbourne were suddenly 74 for seven.

Eastbourne rallied to progress to 90 without further loss until Yodhin Punja, a UAE international player, struck. Jonathan Figy then ended Eastbourne’s threatening partnership with his first delivery in his only over before Asif’s bowling in the final over completed a remarkable victory.

Thanks goes to all the teams for making this year’s event such a great success. We hope to see you again.