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T20 World Cup Qualifier | PNG on cusp of qualification as race for reaching Australia reaches its business end

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T20 World Cup Qualifier | PNG on cusp of qualification as race for reaching Australia reaches its business end

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SportsCafe Desk

10/26/2019

Papua New Guinea are on the verge of qualifying for their first-ever T20 World Cup after an impressive win against Singapore, while Ireland keep their hopes of direct qualification alive with a win over Jersey. Elsewhere, Namibia cruise past Kenya while Oman pip Canada to gain top spot in Group B.

Papua New Guinea vs Singapore

Batting first, PNG got off to a great start with openers Tony Ura and skipper Asad Vala ensuring that they score more than 60 in the first six overs. The run-rate was somehow brought back in control with wickets falling in the middle overs. But the partnership between Charles Amini (41 off 28 balls) and keeper Kiplin Doriga (43 off 27 balls) ensured that PNG posted a total of 180 in their 20 overs.

Singapore were in for a daunting chase and needed a good start to have a crack at the target. But Damien Ravu was absolutely fantastic with figures of 4 for 18 from his 4 overs, never letting the batsman get any momentum whatsoever. Rohan Rangarajan and Tim David tried to put up a fightback with their knocks of 27 and 44 respectively, but in the end, Singapore fell short by 43 runs, and PNG with one foot already in Australia.

Ireland vs Jersey

Ireland bowled first knowing that they had to win to keep their hopes alive of direct qualification, and were right on the money from the get-go. The Jersey batsman were never allowed to get to a start. Mark Adair was the pick of the Irish bowlers with figures of 3 for 10 from his fours overs. All the other bowlers chipped in with a wicket or two to skittle Jersey for just 105.

Ireland got off to a rollicking start, thanks to Paul Stirling with is brilliant 58 runs off 37 balls. After losing Kevin O'Brien early, Stirling strung together a partnership with Andrew Balbirnie. Ireland just needed 14 overs to chase the target and won comfortably with eight wickets in hand, boosting their net run rate.

Namibia vs Kenya

batting first, Stephan Baard gave Namibia a brisk start with his 51 runs from 39 balls. But he was the only one who seemed to be in some form as wickets tumbled at the other end. At one stage even crossing 160 looked improbable for Namibia. But skipper Gerhard Erasmus came out all guns blazing with his 25-ball 52 that included 4 fours and 3 sixes. Assisted by a late cameo from Craig Williams, Namibia reached a total of 181 in their 20 overs.

In reply, Kenya were blown away by some brilliant bowling from the Namibians. Bernard Scholtz (4 for 12) and JJ Smit (3 for 19) stole the show as the Kenyan batsman could offer no resistance. Rakep Patel scored 30 and tried to keep one end intact. But it all went in vain as Namibia bowled out Kenya for just 94, completing an 87-run victory.

Oman vs Canada

Canada batted first and opener Srimantha Wijeratne gave them a steady start with a well made 56 off 36 balls which included nine fours. But there was not much support from the other end as wickets continued to tumble. SKipper Zeeshan Maqsood was the pick of the bowlers with figures of 3 for 25 from his four overs. Canada managed to muster a below-par score of 144 in their 20 overs.

In reply, Oman got off to a brilliant start thanks to opener Jatinder Singh who remained unbeaten in the end on 68 off 39 balls, an innings that included 9 fours and a six. Aqib Ilyas was equally impressive as he made 60 runs off 37 balls. In the end Jatinder Singh along with skipper Zeeshan Maqsood ensured that Oman made short work of the chase, reaching the target with more than five overs to spare and eight wickets in hand, thus grabbing the top spot in group B.

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