Bangladesh 181/7 (Mahmudullah 50, Shakib 46 Morea 2-26, Vala 2-26) beat Papua New Guinea 97/10 (Doriga 46* Shakib 4-9, Taskin 2-12) by 84 runs
Bangladesh secured their berth in the second round with a crushing 84 run victory against World Cup debutants Papua New Guinea. The Barramundis put in a much improved bowling and fielding performance, but it wasn’t enough to prevent their third successive loss at the Round 1 Group Stage. Interestingly, it was only the third meeting between the teams; and the first since the 1996 ACC Trophy match 25 years ago.
PNG made two personnel changes for this game, bringing in Hiri Hiri and Damien Ravu for Tony Ura and Nosaina Pokana respectively. Set 182 for a win, their innings never got going, losing wickets in clumps to collapse to 29/7. It was only some lower order hitting by Kiplin Doriga which saved PNG’s blushes. The wicketkeeper mixed hard running with some sublime shots to guide the total to 97; he remained not out when the last wicket fell, stranded just four runs short of a maiden T20I half-century.
Shakib al Hasan once again lived up to his world class reputation, picking up 4 wickets for 9 runs. Mohammad Saifuddin and Taskin Ahmed were the best of the support acts, achieving figures of 2/21 and 2/12 respectively.
Tigers’ batting made to scrap hard
Earlier, Bangladesh had chosen to bat first after winning the toss. Sporting an unchanged XI from last game, they were rocked second ball by the departure of Mohammed Naim to an innocuous leg stump half volley. It brought about the entrance of Shakib, arguably the best player Bangladesh has produced in their cricketing history.
Alongside opener Liton Das, he put on a 50 run partnership before Das departed to Assad Vala’s off-spin, attempting a slog sweep too many. Mushfiqur Rahim also fell cheaply with the two quick dismissals putting a brake on scoring, limiting the Tigers to 77/3 of the first 11 overs. The relentless heat also played its part, tiring the batsmen out and discouraging too many quick singles. Shakib notably struggled with dehydration and cramping, but played a valiant innings of 46 (38) before throwing his wicket away to a tired hoick.
The innings received some much needed momentum during the latter stages, thanks to a few lusty blows from captain Mahmudullah. He took 19 runs off Chad Soper in the 17th over, before bringing up his half-century off 27 balls. The Tigers eventually finished on 181/7, with the last 5 overs yielding 68 runs. Soper was once again the culprit, conceding 20 runs off the 20th over. He finished with the eye popping figures of 4-0-53-0. The pick of the PNG bowlers were Kabua Morea and Vala, who both took 2 wickets for 26 runs.
Scotland top Group B, join Bangladesh into 2nd round
Scotland 123 for 2 (Coetzer 41, Berrington 31*) beat Oman 122 (Ilyas 37, Maqsood 34, Davey 3-25, Leask 2-13) by eight wickets
In other news, Scotland defeated Oman by 8 wickets to finish top of the group after 3 straight wins in 3 matches. In a do or die game, the Scots dominated from the start, taking wickets at regular intervals and restricting Oman’s run scoring through nagging pace and accurate spin bowling. Josh Davey, Safyaan Sharif, Mark Watt and Michael Leask all put in excellent performances with the ball. For Oman, Aqib Ilyas top scored with a sedate 37 (35), while captain Maqsood scored a similar 34 (30).
A target of 123 was never going to challenge the Scots, who were set determined to overcome years of World Cup heartbreak. In the end, they got there easily with 3 overs to spare and losing only 2 wickets. Captain Kyle Coetzer hit a breezy 41 off 28 balls, while George Munsey 20 (19) and Matthew Cross 26 (35)* dropped anchor to prevent loss of quick wickets.
It was ultimately Richie Berrington who sealed the win with some style, hammering a four and a six over midwicket and finishing with a classy 31 off 21 balls. The win places the Scots alongside Afghanistan, India, New Zealand, Pakistan in Group B of Round 2, with the final two 2nd round qualifiers to be determined by tonight’s clashes.
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