Canada bounce back with win over PNG
Canada notched their first win of the qualifiers by holding on to beat Papua New Guinea by six runs at the ICC Global Cricket Academy in Dubai. Canada raced away to 38 from the first 3.3 overs, but were slowly pegged back by some economical bowling from Mahuru Dai and Hitolo Areni, who both finished with 1 for 27 from their four overs. Nitish Kumar anchored Canada's innings with 57 from 44 balls while Hiral Patel chipped in with 34. PNG got off to a steady start in their chase, led by opener Asad Vala, who made 52. But they allowed the asking rate to climb too far and left their final assault a little too late. Despite 50 runs from the last five overs, they fell agonisingly short.
Blistering half-centuries from Jamie Atkinson and Irfan Ahmed propelled Hong Kong to an eight-wicket win over Bermuda, their first of the tournament, at the ICC Global Cricket Academy in Dubai. Chasing 162, the pair savaged Bermuda's attack, adding 113 together from just 12 overs after the loss of opener Babar Hayat for 6 in the first over. Ahmed perished on 50 to the medium pace of Janeiro Tucker, but Atkinson made sure there would be no last-minute stumble, finishing the match in style with a six of Kamau Leverock. So savage was their assault, that four of the six bowlers Bermuda used had economy-rates in the double-digits. In all, Atkinson's 87 took just 55 balls and contained 13 fours and two sixes. Bermuda posted 161 for 5 on the back of a run-a-ball 43 from captain David Hemp and a late assault from Leverock (18*) and Tucker (31 from 19) that saw 73 runs come off the last six overs.
Afghanistan scrambled home with two-balls to spare to beat Netherlands by four wickets. The Dutch posted 159 courtesy of Alexei Kervezee's 58 from 43-balls. Michael Swart also made 22 from 16-balls opening the batting. Afghanistan's chase was led by a partnership of 58 between Nawroz Mangal, who made a 19-ball 26 and Mohammad Shahzad: his 54 with eight fours seeing his side home, despite 2 for 12 from Mudassar Bukhari. Nine were needed from the final over but two fours from the bat of Noor Ali Zadran saw Afghanistan over the line.
Shakti Gauchan took 4 for 20, including a hat-trick, as Nepal produced their second win in two matches after bowling Denmark out for 82. Denmark has been 58 for 2 but their collapse left them with no chance as Pradeep Airee almost knocked off the target himself. He plundered seven fours and four sixes in making 65 from 43-balls as Nepal won by nine wickets with seven overs to spare, Airee finishing the game in fine style with a big six.
Italy made it two wins in two games as they stopped United States of America short by eight runs at Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi. USA's chase of 138 suffered an early blow when their captain Sushil Nadkarni was caught behind off the first delivery of the innings bowled by Gareth Berg. Vince Pennazza tied USA down, giving only 11 runs off four overs and claiming two wickets. Damian Crowley chipped in with three strikes and despite an unbeaten 35 from Asif Khan, USA managed only 129 for 8. Carl Sandri had earlier smashed four sixes on his way to an unbeaten 49 off 28 deliveries to help Italy recover from 26 for 3 and post 137 for 6.
Ireland responded to yesterday's surprise defeat to Namibia with a comprehensive victory over Kenya. Read the full report here.
Roger Mukasa made a run-a-ball 45 to set up Uganda's three-wicket win over Oman. Chasing 129 Uganda took until the last over to reach their target with Arthur Ziraba making 26 from 25 balls. Hemal Mehta conceded 16 from his four overs but his tight spell wasn't enough after Oman failed to capatalise on several of their batsman getting good starts. Zeeshan Siddiqui reached 30 from 15 balls but he was run out and nobody else could produce a meaningful contribution to guide the innings.
Louis van der Westhuizen blasted a century as Namibia made it two wins out of two with a comfortable 49-run win over Scotland. Read the full report here.