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Bangladesh romp into quarter-finals

February 09, 2006 23:19 IST

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Bangladesh maintained their 100 percent record heading into Saturday's Super League quarter-finals, scoring a comprehensive 171-run win over Uganda.

Batting first, the Tigers scored 255, with captain Mushfiqur Rahim top-scoring with 64 before dismantling the African side's batting for just 84 in 33.4 overs.

 The win confirms Bangladesh as winners of Group A and they will play either England or Zimbabwe in the Super League quarter-finals on Saturday.

Uganda, meanwhile, will face Nepal in the Plate Championship quarter-final next Tuesday.

Bangladesh's win was founded on a fluent innings from Rahim and an excellent all-round performance from Ishraq Sonnet.

Rahim took advantage of a let-off when he was bowled off a Ronald Semanda no-ball on 11 to stroke six fours in an 80-ball innings that took his side forward after they had slipped to 81-4.

That was partly the result of some good swing bowling from the Ugandans and partly the result of some careless batting from the Bangladesh top-order as coach Allister de Winter admitted afterwards.

"We were not entirely happy with that first hour or so," he said.

"We wanted to respect the opposition but perhaps we did not early on and it put pressure on our middle order.

"The bottom half of our order has saved us quite often so far but we do not want to have to rely on that in the Super League so we have some work to do," he added.

Sonnet was part of that lower order and his contribution, blasting 37 from just 25 balls with three fours and a six, gave the innings late impetus and took the final total well beyond Uganda's reach.

Sonnet then took the new ball and, in his first match of the tournament, picked up 3-26.

"His bowling was a bit rusty but his batting gives us real value down the order," said de Winter.

"His effort today will make our selection for the Super League quite hard, although that is a nice problem to have," he added.

Semanda finished as Uganda's most successful bowler with 4-43 while opening bowlers Danniel Ruyange (1-54) and Patrick Ochan (2-61) also enjoyed success although both were expensive.

Uganda quickly slipped into trouble when they batted but their one ray of light was opener Arthur Kyobe who made a defiant 31.

While all the other players fell around him, Kyobe held firm for almost two and a half hours until he was the last man out, brilliantly caught and bowled by Mehrab Hossain (2-7).

Bangladesh's other wicket-takers were Nabil Samad Chowdhury (2-10) and Rezaul Islam (2-10), the latter another player making his first appearance of the tournament.

Apart from Kyobe, no other Uganda batsman made it to double figures and extras were top-score with 32.

Australia make hard work of beating USA

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Australia made hard work of their third victory of the tournament against the USA.

The 1988 and 2002 champions scored the 149 runs they needed to win in just 24.1 overs but they lost six wickets doing it and at one stage they were 53-4.

It took 37 from William Sheridan and 31 from Aaron Finch to calm their nerves as the pair added 69 and by the time they were parted victory was in sight.

The win confirmed Australia as the winners of Group B and means they will play the runners-up of Group C, either Sri Lanka or India, in the Super League quarter-final, on Saturday.

Left-arm spinner Jon Holland was the man who set up the win for Australia as the left-armer captured 4-39.

His effort, together with three wickets for Henriques (3-21) and two successes for Adam Ritchard (2-23), meant the winless tournament newcomers were dismissed in 42.5 overs.

Holland, the leading wicket-taker in Australia's national U/19 tournament in December, when he took 20 wickets at an average of just 11.75, followed up early breakthroughs from Ritchard.

Holland's wickets included the USA's joint top-scorer Akeem Dodson (27).  The other batsmen to reach 20 were Mrunal Patel (27) and Nisarg Patel (23).

Australia used seven bowlers as, after a game against the West Indies the previous day and with the Super League to follow on Saturday, they looked to ensure all their players got a balance between match action and rest.

Opener Usman Khawaja was rested after making 77 against the West Indies and with regular wicketkeeper Matthew Wade replacing him at the top of the order, Tom Stray took over the duties behind the stumps.

When Australia batted they lost wickets at regular intervals as Dominic Audain (2-45), Nisarg Patel (2-37) and Abhimanyu Rajp (2-32) all enjoyed success.

"To get six wickets down was a good effort," said Larry Gomes, the USA coach.

"In all the games we have played in bits and pieces but the levels of concentration and fitness have not always been there.

"I have still been very encouraged by what I have seen and we can take heart from these performances.  We have to refocus for the Plate but I think we can do well," he added.

The USA will play Namibia in that Plate Championship quarter-final next Tuesday.

Waller says Namibia win is down to lessons learnt

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Namibia coach Andy Waller said his side's convincing seven wicket win over Scotland was down to what the players had learnt from their previous matches against India and Sri Lanka.

The Africans had lost both of those matches convincingly but on Thursday they bowled the Scots out for just 156 before knocking off the runs in just 36.3 overs for the loss of only three wickets.

Waller said that performance was due in large measure to his players watching the way the opposition played in their previous two outings and carrying that forward into their latest match.

"I thought we were brilliant in all three departments today, we batted brilliantly, fielded exceptionally and our bowling was great," he said.

"I put a lot of that down to what the players saw during the previous two matches because they saw how the opposition went about things and adopted some of those techniques.

"Today we built partnerships, bowled with discipline, ran well between the wickets and they saw all of that against us in those first two games.  I am sure that helped."

Namibia were certainly disciplined in every aspect of their play but they were also helped on their way by another disappointing batting display from Scotland.

For the third time in as many matches their top order failed and it meant once again super sub Scott MacLennan was called into action at the expense of a bowler.

Only captain Kasaim Farid, who made 76 against the hosts on Sunday, topped 40, making 46 from 73 balls with five fours.

Apart from Farid, the only other batsmen to make it to 20 for Scotland were Richard Berrington (26) and Aamir Mehmood (20) as the Scots, already dismissed for 186 against Sri Lanka and 112 by India, were bowled out in 48 overs by their fellow Associate side.

Nicolaas Scholtz was Scotland's main tormentor as he captured 4-25 with his left-arm spin while opening bowler Floris Marx took 2-19.

The Namibian bowlers conceded only 11 fours through the entire Scotland innings but the only blot on their copybook was the 21 wides they gave away, a significant number in Scotland's relatively meager total.

The other wicket-takers for Namibia were medium-pacer Henno Prinsloo, who took 1-13 in a miserly 10 overs, Morne Engelbrecht (1-34) and Marc Olivier, who captured 1-44 from seven overs in his first outing of the tournament.

"We shot ourselves in the foot with our batting again," said Farid afterwards.

"If we had the answer to why we have failed then we would solve it.  I guess it is just one of those things."

Namibia were never troubled in pursuit of their modest target and with Dawid Botha, their leading batsman, making a solid, unbeaten 55 from just 70 balls and including six fours they won comfortably.

It sends Namibia into the Plate competition with the momentum of a victory under their belt and now they will face the USA next Tuesday.

Nepal's convincing win over Ireland

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Nepal scored a convincing and thoroughly deserved 60-run win over fellow Associate side Ireland to earn a Plate Championship quarter-final against Uganda.

The Asian side made 234-8 after being put into bat by Eoin Morgan with Sharad Vesawkar making an impressive 82 before they bowled the Irish out for 174, despite Morgan's high-class 86.

Nepal captain Kanishka Chaugai got his side's innings off to a rapid start with 40 from just 36 balls including five fours and a six.

He and fellow opener Mahesh Chhetri added 54 for the first wicket with Chhetri's share just six, but once they departed in quick succession to Gary Kidd (2-32) Ireland were able to get a foothold in the match.

However, Veswarkar made sure Nepal maintained a degree of ascendancy with an innings that spanned 142 minutes and included four fours and a six from 116 balls faced.

He added 89 for the fourth wicket with vice-captain Paras Khadra, who struck four fours from 65 deliveries received.

For Ireland, opening bowler Niall McDarby once again excelled.  After his 6-50 against England on Wednesday, the best figures of the tournament so far, he captured another three wickets against Nepal, this time at a cost of 43 runs, from nine overs.

James Hall collected 1-33 and the other wicket taker was McDarby's opening bowling partner Neil Gill, who took 1-62 in nine expensive overs, while there was also a run-out.

Ireland had high hopes of securing a win as Morgan and Andrew Poynter (28) added 66 for the fourth wicket but Morgan's departure, stumped by Chhetri off leg-spinning super sub Shashi Kesari proved a turning point.

Ireland lost their last seven wickets for 29 runs as they made a vain attempt to maintain an ever-rising asking rate.

The European qualifiers were left to reflect on how cruel cricket can be.  Just over 24 hours earlier they had been close to beating England.  One day later and they found themselves bottom of Group D with three defeats from three matches.

Nepal managed to include an unusual tactic in their performance as their captain Chaugai was super subbed out of the game with Kesari coming on to replace him.

And the plan worked.  Khadra took over as captain, Kesari got the vital wicket of Morgan and Chaugai got the chance to put his feet up in the pavilion.

Nepal will play Uganda in the Plate Championship quarter-final next Tuesday while Ireland will face either New Zealand or Pakistan.

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