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Netherlands, Scotland in top two positions in ICC WCLC

Seelaar: “We are disappointed to have lost a match”; Khadka: “In batting, we are a good unit but need to be consistent”; Mommsen: “We wanted the four points and we got the four points”

Netherlands, Scotland in top two positions in ICC WCLC
 - Cricket News
The Netherlands, which skittled Nepal out for 94 to complete an easy seven-wicket win in the first match of the two-match series on Saturday, is on 12 points after eight matches.

The Netherlands is perched at the top of the points table in the ICC World Cricket League Championship but captain Pieter Seelaar is ruing losing one of its two 50-over matches to Nepal in Amstelveen that has helped Scotland narrow the gap to just one point.

“We are disappointed to have lost a match,” Seelaar said after his team went down to Nepal by 19 runs on Monday. “We wanted to go through the whole tournament unbeaten. It is a tough loss to take, an unnecessary loss I would say. If we want to be the best team, we have to play better.”

The Netherlands, which skittled Nepal out for 94 to complete an easy seven-wicket win in the first match of the two-match series on Saturday, is on 12 points after eight matches in a tournament that could give them a shot at qualifying for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. 

The top sides from this tournament, played on a double round-robin basis that gives 14 matches to each team, will join the bottom four sides from the MRF Tyres ICC ODI Team Rankings for the ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier, which will be staged in 2018.

“In the first match, we stuck to our discipline. Our bowlers were very good with hitting the right areas and we also took our catches. Batting-wise we were clinical, though may be we lost one wicket too many,” he said.

Seelaar credited Nepal captain Paras Khadka for the win in the second match after he slammed 84 and took two for 19 with his medium-fast bowling to help gain two points and reach six points from eight matches to be in sixth position in the eight-team league.

“I thought we were a good enough team to beat them. Paras played well but we dropped some six catches. We drifted along with the game but it does not take credit away from Paras. Nepal drove us in a corner but I thought we lost to ourselves,” Seelaar added.

Khadka said he was disappointed at the loss in the first game in which “nothing went right” for them but was happy to have helped pull off a victory in the next one. 

“In batting, we are a good unit but need to be consistent. Our batters need to pull up their socks. I’m trying to contribute my best for the team – I want to lead by example and it’s about the victory and not my performance. Getting into the top four is our goal,” Khadka said.

Meanwhile, Scotland captain Preston Mommsen was delighted after gaining the maximum of four points from two matches against the United Arab Emirates (UAE) that has lifted it from fourth position to second with 11 points from eight matches, overtaking both Hong Kong and Papua New Guinea.

“It was a good display from us, a good team effort in both games. We were very clinical, we wanted the four points and we got the four points. We implemented a lot of things we discussed going into the game,” Mommsen said after Scotland defeated the UAE by 98 runs and seven wickets in their two matches in Aberdeen. 

“It was good to play at home and on a good wicket and I made the most of getting in on both occasions,” Mommsen said about his unbeaten knocks of 111 and 80.

The UAE is languishing at the bottom of the table with two points from eight matches.

“I thought we could have done better with our batting. We did not seem to get enough runs on the board and that was the difference between the two teams. Shaiman Anwar did well for us but we needed more performances like that,” said UAE captain Amjad Javed.

An earlier ICC Intercontinental Cup match between Scotland and the UAE ended in a draw with only 66 overs possible in the four-day fixture of the first-class tournament, which is a pathway to Test cricket. 

Scotland is placed fifth in the eight-team tournament at 30 points while the UAE is last with seven from four. Afghanistan leads the table with 61 from four matches while Ireland is on 60 from three.

The winning side will get an opportunity to play the 10th-ranked Test side in the ICC Test Challenge in 2018 and then try to acquire Test status until the next event in 2022, provided it wins the challenge. 

Scores in brief:

Netherlands v Nepal in Amstelveen:

First match on Aug 13: Nepal 94 all out in 38.1 overs (Michael Ripon 3-21, Timm van der Gugten 3-21) lost to the Netherlands 96-3 in 16.5 overs (Wesley Barresi 37, Stephen Myburgh 33 not out).

 Second match on Aug 15: Nepal 217-9 in 50 overs (Paras Khadka 84, Sagar Pun 45, Gyanendra Malla 39, Michael Rippon 4-35) beat Netherlands 198 all out in 48.3 overs (Roelof van der Merwe 56, Khadka 2-19, Sompal Kami 2-31, Basanta Regmi 2-36). 

Scotland v UAE in Aberdeen:

First match on Aug 14: Scotland 327-5 in 50 overs (Kyle Coetzer 127, Preston Mommsen 111 not out) beat UAE 229 all out in 43.3 overs (Muhammad Usman 34, Amjad Javed 32, Alasdair Evans 4-41). 

Second match on Aug 16: UAE 228 all out in 45.4 overs (Shaiman Anwar 63, Muhammad Usman 43, Rameez Shahzad 33) lost to Scotland 229-3 in 47.4 overs (Calum McLeod 103, Preston Mommsen 80 not out).

ICC Intercontinental Cup:

UAE 212-5 (Shaiman Anwar 78, Rameez Shahzad 74 not out, Alasdair Evans 2-62, Josh Davey 2-37) drew with Scotland.

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