The UAE got off to a poor start in their Asia Cup qualifying campaign with a one-wicket defeat to Kuwait at Al Amerat in Oman on Sunday.
Having made 173 for five in their 20 overs, the UAE looked poised for victory in their opening game after their GCC rivals were struggling at 110 for six in the 14th over.
But Edson Silva (25 off 14 balls, 2 fours and 2 sixes) and skipper Mohammed Aslam (19, 11 balls, 2 fours, 1 six) revived Kuwait's hopes with a fine 34-run partnership off just 13 balls.
With Basil Hameed (3-22) leading the way, the UAE did fight back with late wickets, but the Kuwaitis held their nerve in the last over to win the nail-biting encounter with just one wicket and one ball to spare.
Earlier, Kuwait's opening pair of Ravija Sandaruwan (34, 25 balls, 1 four, 3 sixes) and Meet Bhavsar (27, 21 balls, 4 fours) gave the team a solid start with their 53-run partnership off 38 balls.
It was not the start the UAE had hoped for in this four-team qualifying tournament for the Asia Cup.
While their bowling failed to cope with the pressure of dealing with the fearless approach of the rival batsmen, the batting played its part well.
Chirag Suri was outstanding during his knock of 88 off 61 balls (9 fours, 2 sixes). The opening batsman shared 78 runs for the first wicket with Muhammad Waseem (35, 23 balls, 4 fours, 2 sixes) to give the team a fantastic start after Kuwait elected to field.
The 27-year-old Suri recorded his highest score in T20 international cricket while displaying his range of shots on both sides of the wicket.
The opener also shared 81 runs for the second wicket with rising star Vriitya Aravind (33,29 balls,2 fours).
But in the end, their efforts were not enough as Kuwait completed a memorable win.
The UAE will now hope to bounce back on Monday when they play their second game against Singapore, which lost to Hong Kong by eight runs in the tournament opener on Saturday.
Only the winner of this four-team tournament in Oman will qualify for the Asia Cup, which will be held in the UAE from August 27 to September 11.
UAE lost to Kuwait by one wicket.
UAE 173 for five in 20 overs (Chirag Suri 88, Muhammad Waseem 35, Vriitya Aravind 33; Sayed Monib 1-29, Shiraz Khan 1-29)
Kuwait 177 for nine in 19.5 overs (Ravija Sandaruwan 34, Meet Bhavsar 27, Edson Silva 25, Usman Patel 21, Mohammed Aslam 19; Basil Hameed 3-22)
UAE vs Singapore 6 pm UAE Time
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