Stirling half century leads Ireland to 32-run victory on day one
Afghanistan defeated by the Netherlands
Nepal’s Paras Khadka leads the way with the bat to victory over Denmark
A half century from Paul Stirling saw Ireland commence its title defense with a 32-run victory over Namibia in the opening match of the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier UAE 2013 (WT20Q) at Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi, on Friday.
After being sent in to bat, Ireland set the tone early, with openers William Porterfield and Stirling putting on an 84-run stand that included seven fours and three sixes. After Porterfield was dismissed for 33, Stirling reached a half century (52), before Kevin O’Brien (28) and Niall O’Brien (26) added to the scoreboard. Max Sorensen was run out on the final ball of the innings to leave Ireland at 166 for five.
Raymond van Schoor anchored the Namibia run chase, though wickets fell at regular intervals around him. The side lost four wickets in the final four overs to reach a total of 134 for seven, with van Schoor still at the crease on 48 not out.
Runner-up at the 2012 tournament Afghanistan suffered a seven-wicket first-day defeat at the hands of the Netherlands at Sharjah Stadium. After electing to bat, Afghanistan was restricted by the Netherlands bowling attack, with only Mohammad Shahzad (20) and Dawlat Khan Zadran (19) scoring double figures. After Shahzad was dismissed in the 11th over, Afghanistan was reeling at 50 for five, and never recovered. When Hamza Hotak was run out in the final over, Afghanistan’s total was 90.
In response, Netherlands posted 92 for the loss of three wickets inside of 13 overs. Captain Peter Borren led the way with 38 not out, but handy contributions from Eric Szwarczynski (24) and Stephan Myburgh (21) saw Netherlands chase down its target with seven wickets in hand. For Afghanistan, Mohammad Nabi took two wickets for 18 runs.
Also at Sharjah Stadium, Bermuda scored a first-day victory when it defeated Scotland by 18 runs. After electing to bat, Bermuda lost wickets at regular intervals, but key contributions with the bat were made by Dion Stovell (29), Lionel Cann (27) and Allan Douglas II (21) to keep the run rate ticking over, and the side posted 149 for seven from its 20 overs.
For Scotland, Gordon Goudie, Majid Haq and Iain Wardlaw claimed two wickets apiece.
After losing two wickets in the first two overs, Scotland steadied its run chase, with opener Richie Berrington scoring 29, before captain Kyle Coetzer struck 37 from 39 balls, and Rob Taylor contributed 26.
However, Jacobi Robinson (3-8) and Janeiro Tucker (3-22) combined to capture six wickets in six overs to dismiss Scotland for 131 and seize victory for Bermuda.
Nepal recorded victory over Denmark by five wickets in front of an exuberant crowd at ICC Academy 2. The Nepal bowlers heavily restricted the Denmark batsmen , with opener Yasir Iqbal (17), Bashir Shah (18) and captain Michael Pedersen (15) the only players able to break into double figures, with Denmark reaching 79 in its final over. For Nepal, Sagar Pun took three wickets for 12 runs.
Nepal’s response saw two wickets fall in the first two overs, however, a captain’s knock of 48 from Paras Khadka saw the side reach its target of 80 in the twelfth over for the loss of three wickets.
The clash of regional rivals saw the USA defeat Canada by five wickets with one ball remaining at Zayed Cricket Stadium, Abu Dhabi. After being sent in to bat, Canada scored 137 from its 20 overs, with Jimmy Hansra (39) and Rizwan Cheema (28) making the main contributions with the bat.
In response, the USA started slowly, losing four wickets in the first seven overs to be at 41 for 4. However, a final wicket stand of 77 between Srinivasa Santhanam (28) and man of the match Timroy Allen (50 not out) saw the USA reach its required total of 138 on the penultimate ball of the innings.
Also in Abu Dhabi, Hong Kong’s Hasseb Amjad claimed a five-for (5-12) to lead his side to victory over Italy by seven wickets at Abu Dhabi Oval 1. Amjad ripped through the middle order to help restrict the European side to 110 for eight from its 20 overs, despite a run-a-ball 41 from Carl Sandri.
Hong Kong lost an early wicket before Waqas Barkat steadied the ship, scoring 51 not out from 60 balls to still be at the crease when Hong Kong reached its target of 11 for the loss of three wickets inside 19 overs.
Papua New Guinea (PNG) recorded a four-wicket victory over Kenya at ICC Academy 2 thanks to a 73-run partnership between Kila Pala (46) and Geraint Jones (44).
After electing to bat, Kenya posted 176 for 5 from 20 overs, with captain Collins Obuya striking seven boundaries to finish on 53 not out.
PNG’s run chase started in earnest, and, despite losing wickets regularly, Tony Ura’s eight-ball 25 and the 62-ball partnership of Pala and Jones helped PNG to reach its target of 177 for the loss of six wickets inside 18 overs.
At Abu Dhabi Oval 1, host UAE defeated Uganda by eight wickets, after restricting the visitor to 88 for eight. Mpho Selowa and Davis Arinaitwe each scored a patient 22, however, wickets fell regularly as the UAE bowling attack restricted the run rate, and Uganda posted 88 from its 20 overs.
In response, a half century from Shaiman Anwar (54) saw the host chase down the total inside 15 overs. Brian Masaba struck in the final over to claim two wickets, but it was not enough to stop the UAE reaching its target of 89.