Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Papua New Guinea stuns Uganda with Brazier starring in brilliant bowling display

ICC Media Release

27 January 2009


Jamie Brazier’s four wickets helped Papua New Guinea secure its place at the top of the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division 3 after a surprise 26-run win over Uganda.

And with Afghanistan and Hong Kong also recording victories on a dramatic day of action in Buenos Aries, the race to secure the two remaining places at the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier is wide open.

Martin Gleeson, coach of Papua New Guinea, was delighted that his side secured one of the surprise wins of the day, after defeating previous Division 3 champions Uganda in a tightly fought contest at Belgrano.

“It was a great result for us. There is still a bit of work to do and there is some room for improvement, but we have got the bowling right,” said Gleeson.

“We are very disciplined and we have worked very hard on our bowling. We have good variety, with pace, spin and some medium-pace and have worked on getting the right line and length.

But Gleeson was also keen to play down the fact his side is potentially one win from securing a place in the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier, although it still has Afghanistan and Hong Kong to play.

“We’re not getting ahead of ourselves at this stage. We still have Afghanistan and Hong Kong to play so we plan to continue just taking each game day by day,” said Gleeson.

Afghanistan will provide a big test and after a little bit of a stumble, they seem to be gathering momentum and I think it should be a great match.”

Papua New Guinea recovered from the loss of two early wickets against Uganda to post a respectable target, with Peter Moide holding the innings together with 43 not out off 83 balls.

However, credit should go to the Ugandan bowlers who managed to close out the PNG innings with good effective bowling, reducing it from 126-5 with more than 11 overs of the innings remaining to 165 all out.

In reply, Uganda also looked to be cruising at 67-2 but once Arthur Kyobe (33) was dismissed by four-wicket hero Jamie Brazier, the middle-order crumbled and even a last wicket stand of 28 could not deny Papua New Guinea victory, with Kenneth Kamyuka, who had earlier taken three wickets, left stranded on 34 not out.

Kamyuka disheartened by defeat

Uganda opening bowler Kenneth Kamyuka said that his side was extremely disappointed with the 26-run defeat to Papua New Guinea.

“We are very disheartened as we should have won the match. We took winning for granted and that is something we spoke about in the team meeting,” said Kamyuka.

“We relaxed too much, dropped some easy catches and played some bad shots.”

Uganda who face Hong Kong on Thursday, who beat Cayman Islands on Wednesday, now face a battle to finish in the top two at the tournament, but Kamyuka still believes his side will win a place at the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier.

“I am sure that we will win tomorrow and again on Friday,” he added.

Afghanistan coach Kabir Khan praised the spirit of his team after yet another dramatic victory, narrowly scraping past Argentina by 19 runs.

“The best thing about our team is that they are fighting back when the game seems to be slipping out of our hands,” said Kabir.

“They never give up, they just keep on fighting, and that is the true Afghan spirit.”

Argentina put Afghanistan, who were missing skipper Narooz Mangal following his two-match suspension, under early pressure and consistently broke down partnerships just as batsmen were beginning to threaten to be dangerous.

Opener Ahmad Shah top-scored with 44 in a disappointing total of 164 all out, the third consecutive time in this tournament that the side has failed to bat out the full 50 overs, as many as the star names in the Afghanistan side once again failed to perform to the best of their ability.

Argentina Player-coach Hamish Barton was in outstanding form, taking 3-12 off his 10 overs, including four consecutive maiden overs.

Opening the batting, it was Barton again who led the counter-attack opening Argentina’s innings, with an aggressive 33, but once he was out the frailness of the host team’s batting again was on show as it suffered a dramatic batting collapse, with the spin of Ahmad Shah (2-21) and Mohammad Nabi (2-24) causing problems.

But Argentina has a reputation for fighting hard and some powerful late order hitting from Diego Lord, who had earlier taken two wickets, meant for the third match in this event Afghanistan was facing a dramatic finish.

However, Lord was eventually run out attempting a second run, leaving the home side 19 runs short of its target.

The Afghan coach admitted it had been another nerve-wracking game to watch and that it proved the competitiveness of the Pepsi ICC World Cricket League Division 3.

“Anybody can beat anybody else in this tournament and that is why it is still wide open and we need to work hard to get our place in the final two,” said Kabir.

“If we can beat PNG it will gave us the confidence to go into the game against the tournament’s weakest team but the Cayman Islands have done really well in the last few years and you never know what they are going to do against us.”

In the other game of the day, Hong Kong handed Cayman Islands a third straight defeat, to keep Tabarak Dar’s dream of ICC Cricket World Cup Qualification alive.

Hong Kong posted a target of 210 all out off 46.3 overs, with Manoj Cheruparambil hitting an impressive 83, the highest individual score of the tournament so far, with good support from Roy Lamsam (60).

And a regular flurry of wickets saw Cayman Islands finally dismissed for 161 all out, 49 runs short of its target.


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