|Under 19 World Cup: New Zealand, January 2010|
USA, Hong Kong turn the tables on Associate opponents
The USA and Hong Kong scored impressive wins over Papua New Guinea and Canada respectively in their warm-up matches on Tuesday, in both cases reversing the results between the teams from the World Cup qualifier in Toronto in September.
Elsewhere, Ireland just failed to reach their target in a thriller against the West Indies, while Zimbabwe registered a fairly comfortable victory over Afghanistan. In the all-Full member games South Africa beat Pakistan, New Zealand beat England, Bangladesh proved too strong for Australia, and Sri Lanka prevailed over India by 7 runs in a match cut to 26 overs a side.
The start was delayed in all eight matches as a result of morning rain, leading to a reduction in overs everywhere.
Least affected was Afghanistan’s game against Zimbabwe at Lincoln, where only three overs were lost. But the Afghans were unable to take full advantage of the available overs, being dismissed for 175 with 22 deliveries remaining.
The Zimbabwean new-ball attack of Tendai Chitara and Calum Price secured a couple of early breakthroughs, and it took a solid half-century from Hashmat Shaidi to get Afghanistan up to a reasonably competitive total.
Hashmat eventually fell to Price when he had made exactly 50, and Afghanistan contributed to their own misfortunes with three run-outs in the closing stages. Price finished with three for 57, while Chitara had two for 25.
Afghan hopes were raised when Aftab Alam trapped Gary Chirimuuta leg-before with the third ball of the first over in Zimbabwe’s reply, and the Zimbabweans were briefly in trouble again when Ayub Khan took two wickets with consecutive deliveries to reduce them to 69 for three.
But Peter Moor (45) and Andrew Lindsay (37) steadied the ship, and then Lindsay and skipper Dylon Higgins shared a stand of 51 for the fifth wicket to take their side to within sight of victory. Hamza Hotak struck back twice for Afghanistan, but Nathan Waller knocked off the remaining runs to give Zimbabwe a four-wicket victory with six and a half overs to spare.
Openers Steven Taylor and Henry Wardley gave the USA a great start against Papua New Guinea with an opening stand of 112 in just 16 overs of a match at Lincoln Green reduced to 41 overs a side; Taylor’s aggressive 57 came from just 38 deliveries, with five fours and four sixes, with Wardley playing a more circumspect hand for his 54.
Ryan Corns did not last long, but Shiva Vashishat, Greg Sewdial and Azurdeen Mohammed all maintained the momentum, scoring at better than a run a ball. Azurdeen became the third American to reach a half-century, making 57 from 51 balls, while Sewdial contributed a 19-ball 35.
Charles Amini was the most effective of the Papua New Guinea bowlers, taking four for 68, and the US innings ended off the penultimate ball of their 41 overs on a very substantial total of 286.
It always seemed likely to be too much for the PNG batsmen, and with Naseer Jamali picking up two quick wickets they were soon 15 for three in reply.
Lega Tau (45) and Jason Kila (34) brought about something of a recovery, but the scoring rate fell well behind that required, and Papua New Guinea were eventually dismissed for 170 in 38.3 overs. Asad Ghous took four for 36 for the USA, while Jamali had two for 17 from his six overs.
Hong Kong completed a four-wicket win over Canada in Rangiora, but that outcome had seemed unlikely when they were on 98 for five chasing the Canadians’ total of 189 for eight in their allotted 41 overs.
The foundation of the Canadian score was a stand of exactly 100 for the fourth wicket between captain Rustam Bhatti (64) and Nitish Kumar (52); after Bhatti became the first of three victims for Alex Smith wickets fell rapidly, and the score slumped from 161 for three to 168 for six in the space of ten deliveries. Smith finished with three for 21.
But the Canadian attack quickly struck back, and halfway into their reply Hong Kong seemed to be heading for defeat. It was again Mark Chapman who starred with the bat, assisted this time by Ashish Gadhia. These two put on 86 for the sixth wicket, and by the time Gadhia fell to Zain Mahmood for 43 his side was on the brink of victory.
Chapman finished it off eight balls later, and Hong Kong were home with more than three overs in hand.