Cricket World Cup Qualifier Day 3 – Zimbabwe dominate Netherlands, Nepal win

Nepal picked up their first win of the tournament, whilst Zimbabwe dominated Netherlands to go two from two

Zimbabwe produced a dominant batting performance to beat Netherlands for their second win, whilst Nepal defeated USA despite a century for Shayan Jehangir.

Zimbabwe (319/4, 40.5 overs) defeated Netherlands (315/6, 50 overs) by 6 wickets

A 54-ball unbeaten century from Sikander Raza ran home a thumping win for Zimbabwe against a underwhelming Netherlands side as the hosts went two-from-two at Harare Sports Club.

If the Dutch had a chance of defending 315, their opportunity was eliminated by sloppy fielding, dropping no fewer than 5 catches. Both openers were shelled early in their innings, including Joylord Gumbie twice, and Craig Ervine once. Ervine had been the more aggressive of the openers, making 50 at better than a 100-strike rate, before falling to Vikram Singh in the 14th over.

After 15 overs of Zimbabwe’s chase, honours were broadly even. But Sean Williams’ arrival at the crease put Zimbabwe ahead. The veteran all-rounder smashed the Dutch spinners effortlessly, raising his 50 in 30 balls.

Shariz Ahmed dismissed Gumbie and Wessly Madhevere. However, Williams, joined by Raza, continued to accelerate. Williams was eventually dismissed for 91 off 58 balls, by which time the result all but a formality. Raza had 45 when Williams was dismissed, but scored 57 off his next 21 to finish the game with over 9 overs to spare. He hit the winning runs, a six, to finish 102* off 54, the fastest ODI century by a Zimbabwean.

Earlier, Netherlands had equalled their highest total in an ODI, equalling their 315 against Bermuda in 2007. Max O’Dowd and Vikram Singh built a 120 partnership for the 1st wicket. Singh went on to make 88 but fell to Sikander Raza attempting to accelerate. Captain Scott Edwards scored 83 off 72 before being bowled trying to scoop Richard Ngarava. Late hitting got Netherlands beyond 300, but on a flat pitch the score still appeared under par.

Nepal (211/4, 43 overs) defeated USA (210 all out, 49 overs) by 6 wickets

Karan KC’s opening burst of 4 wickets set the tone for a comfortable Nepal win, despite Shayan Jehangir’s lower order century.

USA’s top order once again struggled on a more bowling friendly surface at Takashinga, this time losing 4 wickets in the first 10 overs. Karan KC did all the damage, his opening spell yielding 4 for 6 off 5 overs, leaving USA 18/4 at the end of the powerplay.

Sushant Modani and Gajanand Singh tried to slowly rebuild for the USA, but Singh was unable to repeat his century against West Indies, falling for 26. Modani fell for 42, leaving Jehangir to shepherd the tail. Jehangir made good on his responsibility, scoring 60 off 32 after Nisarg Patel’s dismissal, to raise his maiden ODI century of 79 balls. He was left unbeaten on 100, as USA were bowled out of 207 in 49 overs.

The score was under par, and Nepal were never behind in their chase. Bhim Sharki led with way with an unbeaten 77 off 114 balls, supported by 39 each from Kushal Bhurtel and DS Airee. USA claimed 4 wickets at periodic intervals, but could neither take enough wickets nor bowl enough dot balls to put enough pressure on the Rhinos. Nepal cruised home with 7 overs to spare to take their first win of the tournament.

Standings:

After 2 round of Group A fixtures, Zimbabwe lead the way with 2 wins, and a healthy net run rate lead. West Indies and Nepal occupy the 2nd and 3rd places, with one win each, Nepal also with one defeat. USA and Netherlands are yet to win, with the Netherlands in 5th with a weaker net run rate, but having only played one game.

Thursday’s fixture see Nepal play West Indies at Harare Sports Club, whilst USA play Netherlands at Takashinga. Zimbabwe have a rest day.

 

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