Before the match every one would have imagined that these matches would likely go the other way round, but Bermuda PNG and The Netherlands registered victories in their first match today.
Bermuda stun Scotland
Bermuda managed an 18-run victory over Scotland at Sharjah Cricket Stadium. Batting first, Bermuda started briskly but was reduced to 105 for 5 in 15 overs. Bermuda eventually scored 149 for 7.
Scotland had a less than ideal start losing two wickets with only eight runs on the board. Richie Berrington (29), Kyle Coetzer (37) and Rob Taylor (26) tried to carry Scotland home but with as many as eight batsmen failing to get into double-digit scores, Scotland folded for 131 in 19.5 overs.
PNG defeat Kenya
In a high-scoring encounter, Papa New Guinea chased the 177-run target set by Kenya with relative ease. Winning the toss and electing to bat, the top-order came good for Kenya, with Colins Obuya, the captain, leading the charge with an unbeaten 53 off 40 balls. Alex Obanda (26) and Steve Tikolo (38), the openers made useful contributions as well before Morris Ouma, who scored a 25-ball 37, joined Obuya for a 68-run third-wicket stand off just 55 balls. Christopher Amini, the captain, took 2 for 31 off four overs, as Kenya finished with a healthy 176 for 5.
In reply, PNG’s openers gave the team a soild platform. By the time Assad Vala (21) and Tony Ura (25), the openers, had departed at the start of the sixth over, PNG was well on its way, with the score on 56 for 2. Kila Pala (46) and Geraint Jones (44) then got together to stitch a 73-run partnership. Following a useful 21 off 11 balls from Chris Kent, Charles Amini (8*) and Jack Vare (1*) ensured there was no further loss as PNG won by four wickets and 14 balls to spare.
Dutch dishearten Afghanistan
At the Sharjah Cricket Stadium, Netherlands registered a seven-wicket victory over Afghanistan in a low-scoring affair. Winning the toss and batting first, Afghanistan’s batsmen put on a disappointing show, with Mohammad Shahzad, the opener (20), and Najibullah Zadran (19) being the only two batsmen to get to double figures. All the Netherlands bowlers bowled well in tandem, with Mudassar Bukhari, Paul van Meekeren, Pieter Seelaar and Ahsan Malik picking up two wickets each, while Peter Borren, the captain, accounted for one.
In reply, Netherlands lost Wesley Barresi, the opener, in the first ball of the innings, when he was castled by Shapoor Zadran. But, Netherlands recovered well from the early blow as Stephen Myburgh (21) and Eric Szwarczynski (24) steadied the ship, before Peter Borren, the captain, took his team home with an unbeaten 38.