|World Cricket League Division 7: Guernsey, May 2009|
Magnificent seven hands Japan its first win
Patrick Giles-Jones recorded memorable figures of 7-9 to help Japan to a comfortable eight-wicket win over Suriname at the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division 7.
The fast bowler, who came to Japan from his native Australia as a student before settling in the country some years ago, bowled an outstanding spell to reduce Suriname at one stage to 7-8.
“I have never been involved in a game like it. The conditions were fine. It was just one of those days where everything I executed managed to come off,” said Giles-Jones.
“Our aim was to try and bowl them out for single figures, but one of their players really stuck at it and helped them recover,” he said.
Brave resistance from Arun Gokoel (31) helped Suriname get to 66 all out before Japan knocked off its target with 29.4 overs remaining setting up a tough match against Bahrain on Thursday.
“I think we are going to give it a really good go against Bahrain tomorrow. We are at the same ground and we know what conditions are like. We are confident that if we can produce a strong bowling performance then we can cause an upset,” added Giles-Jones.
Meanwhile, Bahrain continued its winning ways against the only other unbeaten side in the tournament, Guernsey, beating the host by 25 runs at KG Five.
A century from Ashraf Yaqoob (101), who combined with the in-form Adil Hanif (69) for a fourth-wicket stand of 178, helped build an excellent platform for Bahrain.
A late-order collapse, which saw it lose six wickets for 48 runs in the last seven overs, with Jeremy Frith taking four wickets, perhaps prevented a higher total, although Bahrain still would have been pleased with 257-9 off 50 overs.
In reply, Frith (65) scored his second consecutive half-century but when he and Ross Kneller fell in the space of nine balls, Guernsey was struggling on 140-5 with only 12.5 overs of the innings remaining.
Guernsey skipper Stuart Le Prevost tried to get his side’s run chase back on track, with 47 off 40 balls but he never received the support required as his team eventually fell 25 runs short of its target.
“It was not easy at first, but once I got into my innings I felt good. I always felt that 180 would be enough for us as I think we are strong in our bowling and fielding,” said Ashraf Yaqoob, who was named man of the match.
“Our middle-order is extremely strong and we have put together some good partnerships. I am hopeful we can now go and win this tournament.”
Nigeria also returned to winning ways when it defeated Gibraltar by 88 runs at College Field. Akabogu Okwudili made an impressive 70 not out to help Nigeria to 217-8 with Kabir Mirpuri the pick of the Gibraltar attack as he took 6-61.
Another poor batting display saw Gibraltar struggle again with the bat as it was bowled out for just 129. After three consecutive losses, it is now facing the prospect of relegation to the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division 8.
“It was a much better performance today and we played to our potential,” said Adewale Adeoye, the Nigeria captain.
“As I have always said, we have come here to prove a point that we are good enough to get promotion.”
In Thursday’s matches, Gibraltar plays Suriname, Japan takes on Bahrain and Nigeria faces Guernsey.