PNG Barramundis beat Hong Kong in cricket thriller
PNG's Tony Ura in action versus Hong Kong. He was later named man of the match.
Papua New Guinea held its nerves last night to beat Hong Kong by four wickets in a last over thriller in a Group A match in the ICC World Twenty Qualifier UAE 2012 at the Dubai International Cricket Stadium.
PNG, chasing 132 for victory, was 93 for four after 17 overs and needed 39 runs off the last three overs and 28 runs off the last two overs.
In the last over with 13 required, Geraint Jones put Aizaz Khan's first ball for a six but the bowler struck back immediately when he sent the former England wicketkeeper's stumps for a walk.
However, it proved to be Hong Kong's and Khan's last success as new batsman Chris Amini took a single off the third ball to hand over the strike to Vani Vagi Morea who, in turn, scored the remaining six runs off the following three balls, including converting a waist height no-ball for a boundary to level the scores with two balls remaining.
Morea returned unbeaten on 19 from nine balls with four fours while Jones contributed 34 off 26 balls with two fours and two sixes. Tony Ura, however, top scored for PNG with a 33-ball 46 with five fours and three sixes. He was later adjudged man of the match.
Earlier, Hong Kong captain James Atkinson scored a fine 52 off 42 ball with five fours and six, and a featured in a 38-run second wicket partnership with Babar Hayat (21) to take his side to 131-9.
On Thursday Nepal faltered against PNG and suffered a 35-run defeat in their third match in the ICC World T20 Qualifiers in the UAE.
Tony Ura gets the man of the match award after playing against Hong Kong.
Nepal won the toss and elected to field first. Chandra Saud provided breakthrough as early as the fourth ball of the innings claiming the wicket of PNG's Tony Ura. When Captain Paras Khadka took the wicket of Asad Vala, PNG were reeling at 16/2 in 3.5 overs. Geraint Jones (32 runs) Mahura Dai (12) runs put up a 30-run third wicket partnership. Chris Amini anchored the PNG innings remaining unbeaten with invaluable 38 runs. Jack Vare chipped in adding 19 runs. Nepali bowlers gave away 15 runs as extras.
Shakti Gauchan, who had taken hat-trick against Denmark, and Basanta Regmi took two wickets each. Chandra Saud, Paras Khadka and Mehboob Alam dismissed one PNG batsman each.
In reply, Nepali batsmen failed to build partnership. Paresh Lohani returned to the pavilion scoring just three runs. Though Pradeep Airee and Sharad Vesawkar got the start, they could not translate it into big ones. Airee scored 13 runs while Vesawkar added just 14 runs. Paras Khadka scored six runs while Gyanendra Malla added only eight runs.
Prithu Baskota showed some guts and remained unbeaten scoring 36 runs including a boundary and a six but the wicket kept on falling at the other end.
PNG's Amini was pick among the PNG bowlers as he claimed two wickets. He was named man-of-the-match.
After four matches, PNG has two wins while for Hong Kong it was its third defeat. On Sunday, PNG will take on Netherlands at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi while Hong Kong will meet Denmark at the ICC Global Cricket Academy Oval 1, Dubai Sports City.