Victories for Nepal, USA and Namibia

A round-up of the fourth day's matches in the ICC Under-19 World Cup Qualifier

Nepal Under-19s went to the top of the table with a crushing 159-run win over Vanuatu at YMCA Club. Half-centuries from opener Sagar Pun and No. 3 Naresh Budayair, and a generous 34 wides from Vanuatu, powered Nepal to 250. Seamer Shem Sala was the most successful Vanuatu bowler, taking three wickets for 49. Vanuatu's chase never got going as medium-pacer Krishna Karki sliced through the top order, leaving them at 20 for 4. Nalin Nipiko was the only batsman to put up any resistance, remaining unbeaten on 36, as his side were rolled over for 91, with left-arm spinner Rahul Vishwakarma taking four late wickets.
Ireland Under-19s stayed in touch at the top with their third win of the tournament, a tight two-wicket final-over victory over Kenya Under-19s at Observatory Lane. After being put in, Kenya rustled up a competitive 222, with Duncan Allan's 123 being the centerpiece of the innings. Only two other batsmen, Rakep Patel and Kennedy Ochieng, made it to double digits but both were involved in substantial partnerships with Allan. Ireland's chances seemed virtually extinguished when they slipped to 56 for 5, but half-centuries from Shane Getkate and Graeme McCarter put them back on course. No. 9 Barry McCarthy then swung a 23-ball 26 and, with the help of Joshua Hall (10*), took Ireland home with three deliveries to spare.
Mital Patel's six-wicket haul propelled USA Under-19s to victory against Afghanistan Under-19s at The Hills Cricket Club Ground in Dublin. Afghanistan batted first, but Mital got into the act with early wickets. At 60 for 5, it seemed to be one-way traffic, but Nasir Ahmadzai and Najibullah Zadran added 94 to lend the score some respectability. A target of 183, however, was not enough to pull off victory, though USA lost seven wickets in the chase before getting there in the 45th over.
Namibia Under-19s pulled off their third win in four games when they overhauled Canada Under-19s' score of 236 in 48.5 overs at The Inch in Dublin. Canada's score was built around an unbeaten century from No. 3 Nikhil Dutta, who resisted an incisive spell from Stephen Baard (5-49). Early wickets left Namibia's chase in a spot of bother at 62 for 4 and later 122 for 5, but Merwe Erasmus and Zhivago Groenewald turned things around. Groenewald struck five fours and as many sixes in his 68 that came off 61 balls as Namibia won by three wickets.
Joining Nepal, Ireland and Namibia on six points was Scotland Under-19s, who needed a 43-ball 69 from No. 7 Henry Edwards to take them to a two-wicket win over Papua New Guinea at Oak Hill Cricket Club. The match was reduced to 33 overs a side, and Scotland were left chasing 156 after Peter Legget's three wickets helped them bowl PNG out. Scotland stuttered in the chase and were 67 for 5 before Edwards came to their rescue. PNG seamers Raymond Haoda and Norman Vanua took seven wickets between them, but Scotland got home with 11 balls to spare.