Afghanistan finish their tour with a win against Northern Districts in NZ, whilst in Australia Ireland chased down over 300 in Canberra and Scotland came up short on the Gold Coast
Afghanistan finished its ICC High Performance tour of Australia and New Zealand on a positive note, registering a 16-run win over Auckland. In other matches on Thursday (October 9), Ireland clinched a thriller against ACT Comets while Scotland suffered a defeat against Queensland Academy.
At the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui, Afghanistan posted 264 for 7 in 50 overs before restricting Auckland to 248 for 9 in a tense finish.
Afghanistan’s innings didn’t start on a positive note with Nawroz Mangal retiring out in the fourth over with just 16 runs on the board. Usman Ghani and Najibullah Zadran then got together to take the innings forward with a 64-run stand before Ghani was dismissed by Ish Sodhi after scoring 44 off 48 balls.
Afghanistan finished HPP tour on a high as they won 4 matches out of 8 played 50 overs matches in Australia & New Zealand— Afghan Cricket Board (@ACBofficials) October 9, 2014
With batsmen getting starts but not going on to get a big one, Afghanistan slipped to 174 for 5 in 39 overs. Asghar Stanikzai and Samiullah Shenwari (32*) then called the shots, counter-attacking the Auckland bowlers and stitched an 84-run stand to propel the visiting side to a competitive total. Stanikzai scored an enterprising 62-ball 47 before being run out by James Baker.
In reply, though Joe Carter was dismissed for 15, Bharat Popli (58) and Brad Wilson (30) kept the bowlers at bay, adding 74 runs for the second wicket to help the hosts cross the 100-run mark.
However, the Afghanistan bowlers clawed their way back into the game with regular strikes, and even with Tim Seifert holding one end up with an unbeaten 30-ball 51, Mohammad Nabi, the captain, defended 17 runs in the last over to give the visitors a confidence boosting win.To see the scorecard and review the Northern Districts v Afghanistan match in full, please click here.
Elsewhere at the Manuka Oval in Canberra, Stuart Poynter and Graeme McCarter held their nerves to give Ireland a one-wicket win over the ACT Comets.
Batting first, Comets got off to a bad start, losing both openers with just 18 runs on the board. While Matthew Condon and Patrick Pisel (33) steadied the innings, a splendid fourth wicket stand of 149 in 20.4 overs between Condon and Andrew Harriott (62) helped the Comets’ post 305 for 6. Condon went on to score 126 runs off 128 balls before being dismissed in the 42 over, bowled by Peter Chase.
Chasing 306 for victory, William Porterfield (42) and the in-form Niall O’Brien (36) gave Ireland a brisk start, scoring 75 runs for the first wicket in 11.2 overs. Andrew Balbirnie anchored the innings and scored a 90-ball 86 before he was dismissed in the 46th over with still 21 runs required.
However, the lower-order batsmen hung around as McCarter helped Ireland cross the line with ten balls with spare.To see the scorecard and review the Act Comets v Ireland match in full, please click here.
16 October – Ireland v Northern Districts, Seddon Park, Hamilton (day/night)
18 October – Ireland v New Zealand XI, Seddon Park, Hamilton (day/night)
21 October – Ireland v Canterbury, Bert Sutcliffe Oval, Lincoln
23 October – Ireland v Otago, Bert Sutcliffe Oval, Lincoln
Elsewhere, at the John Blanck Oval in Buderim, Queensland Academy handed Scotland a 93-run thrashing with Nicholas Stevens and Ben McDermott starring with the bat in what was a disappointing show on the batting front.
Put in, Queensland got off to a solid start with James Peirson (29) and Marnus Labuschagne (45) scoring 75 runs for the first wicket in 16 overs, they lost three quick wickets and were in spot of bother at 84 for 3.
McDermott (63) and Stevens (64) added 142 runs for the fourth wicket before the Scotland bowlers stemmed the run flow. The mammoth fourth-wicket stand helped Queensland post 268 for 8 in its 50 overs.
The Queensland bowlers then finished off the chase in 39 overs as Scotland folded for 178. Kyle Coetzer (55) and Freddie Coleman (51) batted well for the visiting side, but six batsmen failed to reach double digits.
Peter George was rewarded for his hostile bowling as he accounted for five Scotland batsmen, ending with figures of 5 for 24 from eight overs. McDermott, though expensive, also picked up two wickets in what turned out to be a facile win for the host.
To see the scorecard and review the Queensland Academy v Scotland match in full, please click here.
15 October – Scorland v New Zealand XI, Bert Sutcliffe Oval, Lincoln
17 October – Scorland v Canterbury, Hagley Oval, Christchurh
22 October – Scorland v Otago