Wicketkeeper Joe Clarke struck a superb 81 not out to set up a 42-run win for England Under-19s over United Arab Emirates in their opening Tri-series encounter in Abu Dhabi.
Clarke shared an unbroken seventh-wicket stand of 108 with Lancashire’s Rob Jones, who contributed 37, as England scored 300 for six having elected to post a total.
It was far from plain sailing for the visitors, who were tottering on 47 for three in the ninth over after Sajid Khan had Harry Finch caught at the wicket.
But Jonathan Tattersall played the situation to perfection, striking a solitary four in a watchful 73-ball 40, and captain Ed Barnard registered a half-century before Clarke’s decisive assault.
Barnard’s opposite number Rohit Singh and UAE opener Chirag Suri also passed fifty as the hosts made an encouraging start, but a collapse from 180 for two to 220 for seven as the required run-rate spiralled saw the match escape from their grasp.
Leg-spinner Tattersall was to the fore during the clatter of wickets and was the pick of the England attack with 3-34.
England are in action again tomorrow against Pakistan, who beat UAE by 26 runs in the tournament’s curtain-raiser.