Disciplined bowling attack helps USA finish in 15th spot of Qualifier tournament
Sending USA in to bat, Denmark failed to make an early breakthrough as Steven Taylor and Akeem Dodson put on a partnership of 79 runs in 53 balls. Dodson was dismissed in the ninth over after his 24-ball knock of 41, caught by Kamran Mahmood off the bowling of Hamid Shah, the off-spinner. Denmark looked to tighten the noose with a few quick wickets as USA struggled to capitalise on the impressive start to its innings. Batting at No. 6, Japen Patel played a cameo of 30 runs from 20 balls to take the Americans to 145 for 7 in it's 20 overs. Shah was the pick of the Denmark bowlers returning figures of 3 for 20 in his four overs.
Denmark had a shaky start to its chase as Adam Sanford sent back Yasir Iqbal, the opening batsmen, for just six runs in the third over. Carsten Pedersen and Freddie Klokker consolidated the innings with a second-wicket partnership of 62 runs. Danial Ahmed struck in the 12th over, dismissing Klokker, stumped by Dodson for 40, to trigger a batting collapse for the Danes. Ahmed removed the next four batsmen without any of them reaching double figures, as Pedersen waged a lone battle of survival for Denmark. Three wickets went down in the last over from Imran Awan, as Denmark were restricted to 124 for 9 in 20 overs. Pedersen remained unbeaten on 42 as Ahmed picked up five wickets for 18 runs in his four overs.
Ahmed, who was named Man of the Match for his five-wicket haul, said, "No complaints, we started off well. The batsmen put a good total on board. The wicket was helping spinners and they had couple of good partnerships in the middle. But we just kept bowling a decent line and length and in the end got wickets. We can learn a lot from the experience and hopefully I can get better."
Reflecting upon the emphatic win and the 15th place finish, Timroy Allen, the USA captain, said, "At the end we got to make most out of it. When we came here we really expected to do a lot better in the tournament. We have lot of new guys in the team, obviously one of them stepped up today, and it was a really good game playing against Denmark. We decided to use our spinners more as we knew it was going to turn a lot. They bowled well and it really worked out for us in the end. We're all so excited with the win."
"I think we just had to come out lot more confident in the tournament. That’s our issue right now, we started off with a win against Canada, but then we had some setbacks in terms of close matches and then it was hard to recover from those defeats," explained Allen. "But, at least today, we came out and we decided this is in our hands now. The bowlers did well today to defend the total. We are a good bowling unit but our batting hasn’t been too effective. At least in this game we all decided we are going to give our all and it really worked out for us."